UnHysterectomy featured in The Toronto Star today re: new fibroid drug Fibristal

Thanks so much to the Toronto Star for the great article on Fibristal, recently approved by Health Canada for the treatment of fibroids.

Here is a cut and paste of the article as well as a link!

Enjoy!

http://www.thestar.com/life/health_wellness/2013/08/30/new_drug_fibristal_attacks_uterine_fibroid_tumours.html

New drug Fibristal attacks uterine fibroid tumours

Fibristal, approved early this month by Health Canada, shrinks fibroids and quickly stops the bleeding

Living reporter,              Published on Fri Aug 30 2013

There’s good news for women who suffer from uterine fibroids.

For the first time, the benign tumours that cause heavy bleeding, pain, bloating and infertility in 30 per cent of women, can be treated with medication instead of surgery.

A fibroid is a ball of muscle within the uterus, which is also a muscle. The uterus starts forming balls and they grow. “If they grow and take up the entire thickness of the whole uterus, then it takes major surgery to either remove the fibroids or remove the whole uterus,” says Dr. Guylaine Lefebvre, chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at St. Michael’s Hospital.

Fibristal, approved early this month by Health Canada, shrinks fibroids and quickly stops the bleeding — which is often heavy enough to cause severe anemia. The drug has the potential to save thousands of women from surgery, as fibroids are the leading cause of hysterectomies. About 25 per cent of women with fibroids require treatment.

“It’s a completely new classification,” Lefebvre says. “And it seems to target fibroids directly, where it stops it from growing and at the same time it stops the uterus from bleeding.”

The drug, a pill taken once a day, is prescribed for women who still menstruate and have symptoms severe enough to consider treatment. The drug has been used in Europe for 18 months. There isn’t 10-year data yet, Lefebvre says, so as a precaution, the drug is currently only prescribed for three months. The medication costs $350 a month.

After that, if surgical intervention is still needed, it’s likely to be a less invasive procedure with fewer possible complications, she says. “One of the major benefits to this is that it works within a couple of days in stopping the bleeding. We haven’t had anything yet that has worked this quickly.”

Not all fibroids grow large enough to cause problems, Lefebvre says, but some women lose half the blood they should be carrying in their body.

Holly Bridges knows what that’s about. The Toronto native, now Ottawa resident, wrote The Unhysterectomy in 2010 after suffering from fibroids and being told a hysterectomy was her only option. She rejected that advice and had two less-invasive procedures, called a hysteroscopic myomectomy and hysteroscopic endometrial ablation.

Bridges devotes herself to patient advocacy about fibroids, coaching women at her website and blogging about alternatives to major surgery.

“Any new tool in the toolbox is a good thing for women suffering from fibroids,” Bridges says.

Lefebvre has already prescribed Fibristal to some patients. “For all those women who want to avoid surgery, it can become an alternative,” she says.

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26 Responses to “UnHysterectomy featured in The Toronto Star today re: new fibroid drug Fibristal”

  1. khensani January 27, 2014 at 9:00 am #

    is the drug available in south africa as well?

    • Holly Bridges February 2, 2014 at 5:51 pm #

      Hello and thanks for your comment. I am not sure if it is or not. You might try looking up the drug company’s e-mail and sending them a note..this is the link to what it’s called in other countries…Esmya. http://www.esmya.com/

      Best of luck!

  2. Shellcher November 11, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

    Hello, does anyone know how long this drugs stays in the body after 3 months and the effect of the drug on an embryo if a women is trying to get pregnant?

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:29 pm #

      Hello and my sincere apologies for the late reply. Due to the volume of inquiries I receive I am not able to respond as quickly as I’d like. Unfortunately I have to refer all questions about Fibristal directly the company. Please direct your questions to:

      Medical Information Service
      Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co.
      2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204
      Oakville, Ontario, Canada
      L6H 6P8
      Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com
      Phone: 1-855 892-8766

      Best of luck and thanks again for your patience. Holly

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 9:04 pm #

      Hello I am afraid I cannot answer your questions as I am not a doctor. But I have contact info for the company if that helps. Contact them to ask your questions and let us know! Many thanks.

      Medical Information Service
      Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co.
      2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204
      Oakville, Ontario, Canada
      L6H 6P8
      Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com
      Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  3. Angel NG November 7, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    Can you tell me how effective is the drug “Fibristal” in shrinking the size of the fibroid , since I really want to try this new drug, but I don’t know whether it really works as I’ve to come to Canada to have the drug.
    What is the percentage of patients who can be cured with Fibristal.
    Looking forward to your reply & thanks.

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:30 pm #

      Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck!

      Medical Information Service
      Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co.
      2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204
      Oakville, Ontario, Canada
      L6H 6P8
      Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com
      Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  4. iona October 30, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Hello Bushra, Thank you for your reply. Do you know where can I buy Fibristal? Is it covered by insurance? I live in Montreal, The price for one month is $430 and it is not covered by insurance. Thanks again

  5. iona October 25, 2013 at 8:28 pm #

    Hello, today my doctor tell me take Fibristal. my menstrual period is oct.19, today is oct.25, is it ok to start taking Fibristal today? (because on consume information, ‘you should start taking Fibristal during the first 7 days of your menstrual period’ ). another thing is : How long should I see doctor again after I start taking Fibristal? Thank you very much

    • Holly Bridges October 28, 2013 at 9:15 am #

      Hello Iona, thanks very much for your post. As I am not a doctor I am going to pass your question on to the Fibristal medical advisor. Watch for a reply or post about this. sorry for the delay. Many thanks.

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:32 pm #

      Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  6. Jen October 23, 2013 at 4:46 pm #

    Would the fibroids go back to regular size after? I am TTC and wondering if this is safe before conceiving since the fibroids can cause miscarriage.

    • Holly Bridges October 28, 2013 at 9:27 am #

      Hi Jen, thanks for writing. I am looking into your question. Can you tell me what you mean by TTC? it will help me, thanks.

      • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:32 pm #

        Hello, thanks for your patience.

        Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! –

        Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

      Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  7. n September 8, 2013 at 1:39 am #

    How does this new drug differ from Prometrium for this indication? I see it’s not recommended for longer than three months use, because it’s not been tested adequately. That’s not reassuring. Aren’t women once again being used as guinea pigs for pharma profit?

    HRT….

    • Holly Bridges September 8, 2013 at 9:21 pm #

      Hello and thanks so much for your comment.

      I am going to refer your question to the manufacturer, Activis and have their medical advisors answer your question.

      Many thanks, Holly

      • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

        Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

      Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  8. Bushra September 5, 2013 at 7:02 am #

    Hello, im from the middle east and the medicine is not available in my country. I tried to get it from Canada but they told us they do not accept foreign prescriptions. Im worried i have 4.5*3.5 cm fibroid plus adenomiosis. Can u give me any solution of how can i get the medicine?

    • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

      Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

  9. Bushra September 5, 2013 at 6:59 am #

    Hello, im from the middle east and the medicine is not available in my country. I tried to get it from Canada but they told us they do not accept foreign prescriptions and i can not come to Canada to see a doctor. Im worried i have 4.5*3.5 cm fibroid plus adenomiosis. Can u give me any solution of how can i get the medicine?

    • Holly Bridges October 17, 2013 at 7:55 pm #

      Hi Bushra, thanks for sharing and for finding my site. I’m sorry I have no ideas for you except for coming to Canada or another industrialized country. You could try looking for a doctor in your area by checking the Physician Finder at aagl.org and clicking in your country. Let me know if you find someone!

      • Bushra October 18, 2013 at 9:13 am #

        Thanks a lot for your reply, i found a doctor in my region. But my question is what is the countries Fibristal is available in?? And is it going to be available in Dubai or Lebanon, and when?
        Also, when is it going to be available in USA?

        • Holly Bridges November 21, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

          Hello, thanks for your patience. Hello as previously mentioned, I am not able to respond to medical inquiries as I am not a doctor! I have contacted the manufacturer and they recommend women contact them directly for questions. Many thanks and best of luck! – Medical Information Service Actavis Specialty Pharmaceutical Co. 2295 Bristol Circle, unit 204 Oakville, Ontario, Canada L6H 6P8 Email: actavis@solutionsinhealth.com Phone: 1-855 892-8766

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