Compare Climara vs. Elestrin

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

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Climara (estradiol patch)

Prescription only

Elestrin (Estradiol gel)

Prescription only
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 hot flashes due to menopause.

Elestrin (Estradiol gel) is a good, easy-to-use option if you don’t want to use pills or patches with estrogen hormones.

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.
  • Elestrin (Estradiol gel) replaces estrogen to your whole body and relieves multiple symptoms due to low estrogen, like hot flashes and vaginal dryness.
  • Elestrin (Estradiol gel) is good for people who don't want to or can't take daily pills.
  • Elestrin (Estradiol gel) has fewer side effects than birht control pills since there are lower amounts of estrogen.
  • Most people start to feel better within 3-4 weeks of starting Elestrin (Estradiol gel).
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).
  • Taking Elestrin (Estradiol gel) increases your risk for many conditions, like endometrial or breast cancer, dementia, heart disease, and blood clots.
  • You have to use Elestrin (Estradiol gel) with another hormone called progestin to lower your risk of uterine cancer.
  • Not a good option for people with liver problems.
  • It's possible to expose other people to the estrogen before it's absorbed by your skin.
  • Can be expensive since it's only available as a brand name product.
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Used for
  • Hot flashes and night sweats
  • Vaginal dryness and inflammation
  • Low estrogen
  • Ovarian failure
  • Prevention of postmenopausal osteoporosis
Dosage forms
  • Patch
  • Gel
Price
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Reviews
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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
4possible side effects
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
    9%
  • Common cold
    9%
  • Breast pain
    8%
  • Lung infection
    4%
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
    • 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