When hugs and medications don’t mix



A hug can mean a lot of things, almost always positive. Unless it comes with something else. Hormones, for example.

Many medications contain hormones, medications that can be in the form of creams, gels and sprays. An example is Evamist, a drug that is prescribed to menopausal women suffering from hot flashes. Evamist contains estradiol, a form of estrogen hormone. It is administered as a spray inside the forearm between the elbow and wrist.

The US FDA issued a warning in July this year regarding adverse events associated with accidental exposure to Evamist, especially children and pets. Exposure may be through direct contact when Evamist is not safely stored or when a child or pet is hugged by an Evamist user and come in contact with area of application. The reported adverse effects in children are:

  • premature puberty, nipple swelling, and breast development in girls
  • breast enlargement in boys

Other accidental exposure includes pets licking application area or pet owners petting their animals after drug application, without proper hand washing. The effects in pets include:

  • Enlargement of the nipples and swelling of the vulva in females in pets
  • Fur loss
  • Undersized sexual organs in male pets

To avoid inadvertent exposure to Evamist, the FDA gives the following recommendations:

Another drug called Dovonex, which is a hormone derivative of vitamin D, can also possibly cause similar effects. Dovonex is a cream used to treat the skin disorder psoriasis. Pet who inadvertently lick the cream present with “unusual thirst, appetite loss, and severe vomiting or diarrhea.”

What should you do if your child or pet comes in contact with these drugs. The US FDA recommends:

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.
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