Q: What is Evista?
A: Evista (raloxifene) is used to help prevent and treat osteoporosis (thinning of the bones) in postmenopausal women only. Evista works like an estrogen to stop bone loss that can develop in women after menopause. Clinical trials have shown that Evista may also have a role in reducing the risk of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Evista is manufactured by Eli Lilly and Company, and was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1999.
Q: What else has research found about Evista?
A: In a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2006, researchers found evidence to suggest that while postmenopausal women who took Evista developed significantly fewer cases of breast cancer than women who took a placebo, they also had significantly more fatal strokes and potentially dangerous blood clots. You should tell your doctor if you have a history of or have active blood clot formation, or any other condition that increases the risk of blood clots.
Q: What side effects are associated with Evista?
A: Evista doesn't act like an estrogen to stimulate the uterus or breast. Therefore, you should tell your doctor if you experience vaginal bleeding, breast pain or enlargement, or swelling of the hands or feet. You should tell your healthcare professional if any of the following symptoms are severe or persistent:
- Hot flashes
- Leg cramps
- Swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- Sudden chest pain or chest heaviness
- Difficulty breathing or coughing up blood
- Pain, swelling, or warmth in the calves, legs, hands, or feet
- Sudden change in your vision such as vision loss or blurring
Q: What should I tell my doctor before he or she prescribes Evista?
A: You should tell your doctor about your health history and any medical conditions including if you:
- Have or had any unusual allergic reaction to Evista or if you are allergic to any other substances (foods, preservatives, or dyes)
- Are or may be pregnant, are planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- Are planning to have any kind of surgery or to have a long period of inactivity (sitting, bed rest)
- Have blood clot formation, active or history of, including deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, and retinal embolism
- Have cancer or tumors
- Have congestive heart failure
- Have any other condition that increases the risk of blood clots
- Have liver disease
Q: Are there any interactions between Evista and other drugs or foods?
A: Evista and certain other medicines can interact with each other. Tell your healthcare professional and pharmacist about all the medicines you take - including prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, and herbal supplements - especially cholestyramine, estrogens, and warfarin.
If you are taking any other medications, you should also review the FindLaw Dangerous Drugs Section for important information on those other drugs, if available.
Q: What should I do if I think I've been injured as a result of taking Evista?
A: If you or a loved one have experienced any dangerous symptoms or unusual medical conditions while taking Evista, you should first contact your doctor or other healthcare professional. You may also wish to meet with an experienced product liability attorney to discuss your options and to protect your right to a legal remedy for any injuries caused by Evista use.
For more information on an attorney's role with this type of issue, see the Get Legal Help with a Defective Product Injury article.
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Contact a qualified product liability attorney to make sure your rights are protected.