Compare Climara vs. Estradiol Norethindrone

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Treats low estrogen, relieves menopause symptoms, and lowers your risk of osteoporosis.

Climara (estradiol patch) is a treatment for low estrogen that is used only once weekly, and it may have fewer side effects than oral estrogen pills.

Relieves menopause symptoms and lowers your risk of osteoporosis.

Activella (Estradiol / Norethindrone) is effective at treating symptoms related to menopause and preventing bone loss. The estrogen/progestin combo is a good options for women with an intact uterus.

Upsides
  • Climara (estradiol patch) replaces estrogen to your whole body and relieves many symptoms due to low estrogen, like hot flashes and vaginal dryness.
  • The patch is good for people who don't want to or can't take daily pills.
  • Climara (estradiol patch) is available as a generic product, which lowers the cost.
  • By using a patch instead of a pill, there's a lower risk of side effects such as blood clots and stroke since lower amounts of estrogen are used in patches.
  • Lowers your risk of fractures by keeping your bones healthy.
  • Activella (Estradiol / Norethindrone) replenishes estrogen to your whole body and relieves multiple symptoms due to low estrogen (hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness).
  • Good choice for women with intact uterus. The norethindrone (a progestin) protects against the risk of cancer in the uterus from estrogen treatment.
  • Lowers your risk of fractures by keeping your bones healthy. Make sure you also get enough calcium and Vitamin D.
  • Improves mood, energy, and mental alertness for some people.
  • Mimvey brand is less expensive than other estrogen/progestin combination medicines.
Downsides
  • The patch can fall off, especially if you like to regularly swim, take baths or use saunas or steamrooms.
  • Increases your risk of uterine and breast cancer.
  • If you have your uterus, you have to use the Climara (estradiol patch) with another hormone called progestin to lower your risk of uterine cancer.
  • Can worsen other health conditions, like high cholesterol, asthma, diabetes, fluid retention, underactive thyroid and migraines.
  • If you're only having vaginal dryness or inflammation and not hot flashes, it's better to use creams that you can apply to the affected area instead of Climara (estradiol patch).
  • More potential side effects since it exposes your whole body to two hormones, estrogen and norethindrone (a progestin).
  • Increases your risk of developing blood clots and stroke.
  • You may get irregular bleeding and spotting that can last a few months to a year.
Used for
  • Hot flashes and night sweats
  • Vaginal dryness and inflammation
  • Low estrogen
  • Ovarian failure
  • Prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis
  • Hot flashes and night sweats
  • Vaginal dryness and inflammation
  • Prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis
Dosage forms
  • Patch
  • Pill
Price
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Side effects
16possible side effects
  • Breast pain
    28%
  • Lung infection
    17%
  • Stomach pain
    16%
  • Headache
    13%
  • Pain
    11%
  • Swelling of arms and legs
    10%
  • Back pain
    9%
  • Depression
    8%
  • Gas
    7%
  • White or yellow vaginal discharge
    7%
  • Sore throat
    7%
  • Nausea
    6%
  • Stuffy nose
    6%
  • Joint pain
    5%
  • Sinus infection
    5%
  • Itchiness
    3%
See more detailed side effects
15possible side effects
  • Breast Pain
    24%
  • Upper Respiratory Tract Infection
    18%
  • Headache
    16%
  • Sinusitis
    7%
  • Back Pain
    6%
  • Insomnia
    6%
  • Post-Menopausal Bleeding
    5%
  • Uterine Fibroid
    5%
  • Infection Viral
    4%
  • Moniliasis Genital
    4%
  • Injury Accidental
    4%
  • Nausea
    3%
  • Ovarian Cyst
    3%
  • Gastroenteritis
    2%
  • Other Events
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Endometrial cancer
    • Using estrogen for more than one year
  • Breast cancer
    • Personal or family history of breast cancer
    • Using estrogen for more than one year
  • Increased risk of blood clots and stroke
    • Personal or family history of blood clots
    • Smoking
    • Obesity
    • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Increased risk of heart disease
    • Smoking
    • Obesity
    • High blood pressure
    • High blood sugar
    • High cholesterol
    • Age 50 or older
  • Dementia
    • Age 65 or older
  • Pancreas swelling (pancreatitis)
    • High levels of triglycerides
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Endometrial cancer
    • Using estrogen for more than one year
  • Breast cancer
    • Personal or family history of breast cancer
    • Duration of use
  • Increased risk of blood clots and stroke
    • Personal or family history of blood clots
    • Obesity
    • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Harm to fetus
    • Women of childbearing age
  • Pancreas swelling (pancreatitis)
    • High levels of triglycerides
  • Ovarian cancer
    • Family history of ovarian cancer
See more detailed risks and warnings