Diethylstilbestrol, DES injection

What is diethylstilbestrol injection?

DIETHYLSTILBESTROL (Stilphostrol®) is a synthetic (laboratory-made) drug that acts in a similar way to naturally occurring estrogens (female hormones). Diethylstilbestrol diphosphate helps to treat and relieve the symptoms of prostate cancer. Stilphostrol® (diethylstilbestrol diphosphate) is not for the treatment of any disorder in women. Generic diethylstilbestrol injections are not yet available.

What should my health care professional know before I receive diethylstilbestrol?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • blood vessel disease, blood clotting disorder, or suffered a stroke

  • breast cancer

  • diabetes

  • high blood pressure

  • high level of calcium in the blood

  • liver disease or jaundice

  • porphyria

  • tobacco smoker

  • an unusual or allergic reaction to diethylstilbestrol, other hormones, medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives

  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant

How should I receive this medicine?

Diethylstilbestrol is for slow infusion into a vein. It is given by a health-care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.

This medication is not for use in women or children.

What if I miss a dose?

Try to keep all appointments as scheduled for your medication. If you cannot keepyour appointment as scheduled, contact your health care provider for other arrangements.

What drug(s) may interact with diethylstilbestrol?

  • bosentan

  • bromocriptine

  • calcium salts

  • cimetidine

  • cyclosporine

  • dantrolene

  • medications for diabetes

  • growth hormone

  • hormones such as hydrocortisone, cortisone, corticotropin or prednisone

  • imipramine or other tricyclic antidepressants

  • tamoxifen or raloxifene

  • thyroid hormones

  • warfarin

Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check with your health care professional before stopping or starting any of your medicines.

What should I watch for while taking diethylstilbestrol?

Visit your prescriber or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Your prescriber or health care professional may change your diethylstilbestrol to tablet form once your condition is stable.

Diethylstilbestrol can make your body retain fluid, making your fingers, hands, or ankles swell. Your blood pressure can go up. Contact your prescriber or health care professional if you feel you are retaining fluid.

Tobacco smoking increases the risk of getting a blood clot or having a stroke while you are taking diethylstilbestrol, especially if you are more than 35 years old. You are strongly advised not to smoke.

If you wear contact lenses and notice visual changes, or if the lenses begin to feel uncomfortable, consult your eye prescriber or health care professional.

This medication can cause harm to the fetus if taken by a woman who is pregnant. This medication is not for use in women who are pregnant or who might be pregnant. In general, this medication is not prescribed in women of any age.

If you are going to have elective surgery, you may need to stop taking your DES one month beforehand. Consult your health care professional for advice prior to scheduling the surgery.

What side effects may I notice from receiving diethylstilbestrol?

Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • breast enlargement, tenderness

  • chest pain, sudden shortness of breath

  • frequent or painful passing of urine

  • leg, arm or groin pain

  • mood changes, anxiety, depression, frustration, anger, or emotional outbursts

  • nausea, vomiting

  • severe headaches

  • stomach pain (severe)

  • swelling of the hands, feet or ankles, or rapid weight gain

  • vision or speech problems

  • yellowing of the eyes or skin

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • change in sexual desire

  • mild stomach upset

  • increased or decreased appetite

  • skin rash, acne, or brown spots on the face

  • tiredness

  • weight gain

Where can I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.


Diethylstilbestrol, DES tablets

What are diethylstilbestrol, DES tablets?

DIETHYLSTILBESTROL, "DES" (Stilphostrol®) is a synthetic (laboratory-made) drug that acts in a similar way to naturally occurring estrogens (female hormones). Diethylstilbestrol diphosphate helps to treat and relieve the symptoms of prostate cancer. Stilphostrol® (diethylstilbestrol diphosphate) is not for the treatment of any disorder in women. Generic diethylstilbestrol, "DES" tablets are not available. In the US, "DES" tablets are not available in any form.

What should my health care professional know before I take diethylstilbestrol?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • blood vessel disease, blood clotting disorder, or suffered a stroke

  • breast cancer

  • diabetes

  • high blood pressure

  • high level of calcium in the blood

  • liver disease or jaundice

  • porphyria

  • tobacco smoker

  • an unusual or allergic reaction to diethylstilbestrol, other hormones, medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives

  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant

How should I take this medicine?

Take diethylstilbestrol tablets by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Swallow the tablets with a drink of water. If the tablets upset your stomach, take them with food or milk. Take your doses at regular intervals; diethylstilbestrol works best when taken at the same time each day. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.

This medication is not for use in children.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose and resume your normal schedule. Do not take double or extra doses.

What drug(s) may interact with diethylstilbestrol?

  • bosentan

  • bromocriptine

  • calcium salts

  • cimetidine

  • cyclosporine

  • dantrolene

  • medications for diabetes

  • growth hormone

  • hormones such as hydrocortisone, cortisone, corticotropin or prednisone

  • imipramine or other tricyclic antidepressants

  • tamoxifen or raloxifene

  • thyroid hormones

  • warfarin

Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check with your health care professional before stopping or starting any of your medicines.

What should I watch for while taking diethylstilbestrol?

Visit your prescriber or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. You should have a complete check-up every 6 to 12 months.

Diethylstilbestrol can make your body retain fluid, making your fingers, hands, or ankles swell. Your blood pressure can go up. Contact your prescriber or health care professional if you feel you are retaining fluid.

Tobacco smoking increases the risk of getting a blood clot or having a stroke while you are taking diethylstilbestrol, especially if you are more than 35 years old. You are strongly advised not to smoke.

If you wear contact lenses and notice visual changes, or if the lenses begin to feel uncomfortable, consult your eye prescriber or health care professional.

Check with your prescriber or health care professional if you develop a spotty darkening of the skin while you are taking diethylstilbestrol.

This medication can cause harm to the fetus if taken by a woman who is pregnant. This medication is not for use in women who are pregnant or who might be pregnant. In general, this medication is not commonly prescribed in women of any age.

If you are going to have elective surgery, you may need to stop taking your DES one month beforehand. Consult your health care professional for advice prior to scheduling the surgery.

What side effects may I notice from taking diethylstilbestrol?

Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • breast enlargement, tenderness

  • chest pain, sudden shortness of breath

  • leg, arm or groin pain

  • nausea, vomiting

  • severe headaches

  • stomach pain (severe)

  • swelling of the hands, feet or ankles, or rapid weight gain

  • vision or speech problems

  • yellowing of the eyes or skin

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • change in sexual desire

  • facial hair growth

  • mild stomach upset

  • mood changes, anxiety, depression, frustration, anger, or emotional outbursts

  • increased or decreased appetite

  • skin rash, acne, or brown spots on the face

  • tiredness

  • weight gain

Where can I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light. Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.