Lupron shot is available for use in men, women, and children, although it is a prescription drug. Lupron is the brand name, whereas Leuprolide is the generic name.
What is Lupron Shot?
It is a man-made gonadotropin-releasing hormone which works by over stimulating body’s production of some hormones, eventually, the production stops temporarily. Lupron depot shot reduces testosterone and estrogen levels and it is given under the skin or into the muscle. The medication may be given daily, monthly or every three to four months, depending on the condition one is being treated for and the formulation or as per doctor’s prescription.
What is This Medication Used For?
When given to men on a regular basis, depo Lupron shot reduces the levels of testosterone; this is an explanation about the use of Lupron shot for prostate cancer. Some types of prostate cancer require testosterone hormone to grow and spread, thus the reduction of the hormone stops or slows cancer cells from growing and spreading. The drug only treats the signs and symptoms of prostate cancer; it manages cancer but not a cure.
The physician puts a woman on this injection for a number of reasons such as:
- Breast cancer and ovarian cancer
The injection works in women by decreasing estrogen levels; elevated levels of estrogen is associated with endometriosis, fibroids and some cancers. Endometriosis is a painful condition; therefore, Lupron for endometriosis treatment has been beneficial to many women struggling with the condition by lessening the pain and restoring fertility. Endometriosis is one cause of infertility in females. Fibroids and endometriosis can lead to excessive vaginal bleeding and develop anemia in the long run. If you experience heavy bleeding accompanied by pain, it’s crucial to seek medical intervention for the doctor to administer Lupron for endometriosis, if the medical provider diagnoses the condition.
This drug is favorable to girls and boys who are faced with early puberty; it slows the development, for example, the growth of breast or testicles and delays of periods for the child receiving it. The physician may give the shot for other uses which are not explained in the article. The important thing is to follow the doctor’s prescription and refer to him for clarification if need be.
Take note that during the initial weeks of the treatment, the levels of the hormone in a patient increase before decreasing; it is a normal response by the body to the drug. The increase is temporal for the first few weeks and worsens the symptoms of the condition you are receiving the treatment for; however, the condition eventually improves as you continue taking the injections. For example, men on Lupron injection prostate cancer therapy, will be faced with elevated testosterone levels after starting the shots may result to new symptoms. If a man has prostate cancer which has spread to the spine or resulted to urinary blockage, the medical care provider monitors the patient closely, particularly once the man starts taking the injection. The physician will advise you to be on the lookout for side effects like:
- Bone pain
- Blood in your urine
- Difficult or painful urination
- Unusual weakness
- Inability to move
- Numbness or weakness of the arms or legs
How to Use
As earlier stated, the shot is given subcutaneously or intramuscularly. The medical practitioner may allow you to give the shots at home, however, ensure you understand the following:
- Preparation of the injection
- The procedure of giving the shot
- The areas for the injection
- How to discard the injection materials used
- The duration you can store the injection and how to store it
The medication comes in different strengths and brands to treat various conditions, always counter check to ensure you have the correct brand and strength as prescribed, especially if receiving the injection at home, if uncertain, consult the doctor.
What to remember while on the medication
- A severe allergic reaction to this medication may occur, although it is very rare. If it happens, get medical intervention with immediate effect. Symptoms of allergic reactions are; rash, severe dizziness, trouble breathing, swelling, more so on the tongue, face or throat. Thus, don’t use Lupron if allergic to it.
- The drug can harm the fetus when used by a pregnant woman. In case you become pregnant, let the doctor know right away. For the breastfeeding mother, an alternative medication should be given or stop breastfeeding if one must receive the Lupron shots
- This medication stops a woman from ovulating or having menses, but a pregnancy may occur; it is wise to be on non-hormonal birth control method such as a condom.
- An expected effect of the injection is to stop the menstrual period, inform the health care provider if the periods occur while on the medication.
- The medication may pass into your body fluids such as urine, vomit or feces. Avoid coming into contact with body fluids for the first 48 hours after receiving the injection. It’s recommended for the caregivers to use rubber gloves when cleaning patient’s body fluids and wash their hands before and after removing the gloves. Soiled linen must be washed separately from the rest of the laundry.
- Medical history and existing conditions play a crucial role to determine if the drug is fit for a patient; the two are used to determine the potential benefits against the side effects on the patient.
While on the medication, remember to vigilant on side effects, they may vary from one patient to another, some never experience the unwanted effects, for more information refer to the doctor. In conclusion, it’s important to budget for Lupron shot cost, you may be on the medication for one year, thus enquire in advance from the health care provider about the total cost for the entire period.