Vivelle, also called the Vivelle-Dot®, is a tiny, adhesive skin patch that contains estradiol, a form of female estrogen. Some physicians prescribe it as an alternative to pill forms of estrogen, in order to help relieve symptoms of menopause.
The Vivelle-Dot® transdermal patch was first introduced by Novogyne Pharmaceuticals in the United States in 1999. Containing estradiol, it was marketed as a treatment for menopausal symptoms. Other patches also are available, marketed under other brands but Vivelle was the smallest such patch, which is why it has the "dot" name.
Vivelle can be prescribed in a choice of strengths from 0.025 to 10 mg/day. The lowest strength that will achieve the objective is normally recommended. The 0.025 mg/day patch is approximately dime-size. It is recommended that women try the smallest dose to begin and use the treatment for as short a period of time as possible based on effects and need.
The Vivelle patch is used to help women deal with the effects menopause, which can include irritation and dryness in the vagina. In addition, the patch's extradiol can be prescribed to help prevent osteoporosis in a post-menopausal woman, abnormal vaginal bleeding, and some other female disorders.
It's recommended that the woman apply the Vivelle patch to clean, dry skin on the lower portion of her abdomen. The location for the patch should be changed each time a fresh patch is applied. The patch should NOT be applied to the breasts.
The Vivelle patch is designed to stay securely in position despite showers, swimming or exercise. It is small and can easily be hidden under garments, although it should not be placed where the skin naturally folds or where it will be continually be rubbed by a waistband or belt.
Some women have reported having tenderness in the breasts, headaches or back pain with the Vivelle-Dot. If more serious side effects occur, such as a very sudden headache or confusion, chest pain, sudden weakness, a numb feeling in one side of the body, abnormal vaginal bleeding or any other problem that is not normal, call your doctor. In case of chest pain or symptoms of stroke, immediately call 911 for emergency services.
Estrogens/estradiol can increase the risk of developing problems such as uterine cancer, blood clots or stroke. Do not take while pregnant or nursing. Vivelle and other estrogen products can cause birth defects and pass to the baby through milk. Talk to your doctor about any medical conditions you have, such as liver problems, present or past cancers, heart problems, abnormal vaginal bleeding and ensure he knows your complete health history to determine the risks for you. As with any medication, follow the doctor's orders and the prescription details.