Lupron: see what it is, what it is for, how to apply it and price

Hormones are substances produced by the endocrine system. There are different types, with various functions, but all with great importance for the functioning of the organism.

Therefore, it is important to be aware, since there are serious diseases related to hormonal interference – some types of cancer or disorders such as endometriosis , for example.

In such cases, medications are needed to regulate the functioning and release of some hormones. That is, it is necessary to increase or inhibit a certain hormonal production.

What is Lupron?

Lupron is the commercial name of two drugs whose active ingredient (drug) is Leuprorelin Acetate, they are: Lupron Depot and Lupron, both being reference drugs.

Considering that both have the same active substance, they act in a very similar way in the body. Leuprorelin Acetate is a synthetic hormone – that is, it is produced chemically to mimic what is done by the body.

It works by decreasing the body’s production of the hormone gonadotropin (sex hormone), in a way that blocks the hormonal production of the ovaries and testicles.

However, although similar, they are not identical. Better understand the difference:

What is the difference between Lupron Depot and Lupron?

The reference medicine (that is, created and approved first) is Lupron Depot, so that all medicines made afterwards (generic or similar) are based on their original formula.

Lupron, on the other hand, is still classified as new . That is, it had its approval and commercialization started recently.

The biggest difference between them is the indication of the package leaflet. Considering that the first is approved and indicated for the treatment of 5 different problems ( advanced prostate cancer, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, early puberty and advanced breast cancer , all involving hormonal disorders) and the second is indicated only for the treatment of advanced stage prostate cancer.

In addition, the application is also different: Lupron Depot is an intramuscular injection (directly into the muscle) and Lupron is used subcutaneously (under the skin).

What is Lupron FIV?

Contrary to what some people may think, Lupron IVF is not a type or variation of the drug Lupron.

In fact, the acronym FIV stands for in vitro fertilization , a technique of artificial reproduction. It is common for women who perform this type of procedure to receive medical advice to use hormonal control medications.

However, although the drug Lupron has hormonal regulatory action, its package insert does not indicate use for cases of artificial reproduction. Even so, the substance can be used in such cases.

What is the medicine Lupron Depot for?

According to the package insert , Lupron Depot can be used to treat prostate cancer, endometriosis, fibroids in the uterus, precocious puberty and breast cancer. This is because its active principle regulates sex hormones, which are mainly responsible for these disorders.

It is worth mentioning that the drug Lupron (new) differs in the indication, since the package insert indicates it to treat only prostate cancer.

Next, better understand the pathologies and how the medication works in each case:

Prostate cancer

Lupron Depot, like Lupron (new), can be indicated for the treatment of patients with advanced prostate cancer (malignancy).

In addition, the package insert provides an indication that the medication should be used for the period of time stipulated by the doctor in charge.

That is, there is no pre-established limit for the use of medication, it is at the discretion of the responsible medical team.

Lupron Depot is an injection that must be applied once every 3 months, through a single intramuscular dose.


The endometriosis is a more common condition than some people imagine – thousands of women are diagnosed every year. It is a disorder in which the lining tissue of the uterus grows out of it.

Although there are treatments, the disease can last for years or even a lifetime.

The drug Lupron Depot can be indicated for hormonal control and, consequently, of the disease itself. In this case, the package insert informs that the treatment must have a maximum duration of 6 months (which corresponds to 2 applications of the drug).

Fibroids in the uterus

Uterine fibroids (or uterine fibroids ) are a type of non-cancerous tumor in the uterus. That is, it is a benign tumor. The recurrence of the disorder is very common, considering that it affects approximately 2 million Brazilians annually.

It is common for the pathology to be diagnosed in women of childbearing age and it is worth noting that it hardly turns into cancer in the womb. Symptoms include heavy menstrual bleeding, prolonged menstrual periods and pelvic pain – but the disease can also be asymptomatic.

The drug Lupron Depot can be indicated for treatment and, according to the package insert, it should be performed for a maximum of 6 months (equivalent to 2 applications).

Breast cancer

Lupron Depot can be indicated for the treatment of patients with breast cancer (malignant neoplasm) in an advanced stage.

The package insert provides some specifications regarding the conditions necessary to receive treatment with Lupron Depot. For example, it is recommended only for women in pre and perimenopause – when hormone therapy is indicated.

There is only an indication that the drug should be used for the period of time stipulated by the doctor – so that there is no pre-established limit for the use of the medication, which is at the discretion of the medical team.

It is worth mentioning that in this case, as well as in the others, it is necessary to wait an interval of 3 months between each application of the medication.

Can Lupron be used for early puberty?

Lupron’s package insert indicates that the drug is for the treatment of advanced prostate cancer. But Lupron Depot is indicated for the treatment of early puberty and 4 other conditions.

This is possible considering that the medication works by regulating the production of sex hormones (active substances that trigger puberty). Therefore, medication can be effective in these cases.

What is the mechanism of action of the active ingredient Leuprorelin?

Leuprorelin acetate (active ingredient of the drug Lupron and Lupron Depot) is a synthetic hormone – that is, made in the laboratory. It works by decreasing the body’s production of gonadotropin (sex hormones).

With this, the substance blocks the hormonal production of the ovaries and testicles. Thus, Leuprorelin acetate can prevent the development of some hormone-dependent tumors – such as some types of prostate and breast tumors.

In addition, as mentioned, it can treat other diseases related to hormonal dysregulation (such as uterine fibroids and endometriosis).

It is worth mentioning that, according to the information on the package insert, the substance begins to have an effect on the body after approximately 1 month of use.

How to apply Lupron Depot injection?

According to the package insert, the drug Lupron Depot must be applied intramuscularly (inside the muscle). Before and after carrying out the application, it is necessary to pass a cotton swab with alcohol for cleaning. It is worth mentioning that the medication needs to be prepared, that is, it does not come ready.

To learn how to prepare, you can follow the step by step present in the package insert or have medical help. It is also important to know that it is necessary to change the application site with each dose.

In addition, it should be noted that this indication is only for the drug Lupron Depot. Because, as mentioned in the previous topic, Lupron (new) remedy has the indication of subcutaneous application (under the skin).

What are the side effects of Leuprorelin acetate?

Like all medicated substances, Leuprorelin acetate can also cause side effects to people who use it. Reactions such as headaches can occur, even the most severe ones, as symptoms worsen.

Generally, package inserts divide side effects into very common, common, rare and very rare. In particular, in the case of Leuprorelin acetate, the division is made according to the disease being treated, sex and age group. Check out:

Prostate cancer patients

The most common adverse reactions, presented by patients undergoing treatment for prostate cancer, are:

  • Worsening of the symptoms of the disease during the first week of treatment;
  • People in whom the tumor has reached the bones of the spine (vertebrae) or who are unable to urinate due to obstruction by the tumor may feel weak, lose sensitivity in the lower limbs or experience worsening of urinary symptoms;
  • Weight gain or anorexia;
  • Hot flashes, decreased sexual desire, increased sweating;
  • Urinary changes, impotence, changes in the testicles, urinary infections;
  • Injection site reactions, itching;
  • Bone pain;
  • Muscle tiredness and / or weakness.

Patients with endometriosis and fibroids in the uterus

The most common adverse reactions, presented by patients undergoing treatment for endometriosis or fibroids in the uterus, are:

  • Generalized pain, headache;
  • Heat waves, sweating;
  • Nausea, vomiting, gastrointestinal disorders (stomach or intestine);
  • Edema (abnormal accumulation of fluids in the body);
  • Weight gain or loss;
  • Acne;
  • Joint problems;
  • Decreased sexual desire, depression, nervousness, neuromuscular changes;
  • Dizziness, numbness;
  • Skin reactions;
  • Pain and tenderness in the breasts, vaginitis.

Breast cancer patients

The most common adverse reactions, presented by patients undergoing treatment for breast cancer, are:

  • Fogacho (feeling of sudden heat), increased sweating;
  • Headache (headache);
  • Cold symptoms;
  • Hardening and pain at the application site;
  • Fever;
  • Vomiting, nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, constipation;
  • Dermatitis;
  • Weight gain or loss, appetite increase or decrease;
  • Cervical pain, back pain, joint pain, arthralgia;
  • Generalized weakness, decreased physical capacity;
  • Loss of hair;
  • Fluctuation of mood, nervousness, insomnia, depression;
  • Leukopenia (decrease in the rate of leukocytes in the blood);
  • Erythema (redness of the skin);
  • Vaginitis (infectious inflammation, or not, of the vaginal mucosa).

Is Lupron Depot approved by ANVISA?

-Yeah . The Lupron Depot remedy has Registration No. 198600007 with ANVISA (National Health Surveillance Agency) and is categorized as a hormonal medication.

Therefore, it is approved for use and commercialization as a drug that has proven to be safe and effective.

What is the price of Lupron? Where to buy cheaper?

The price * for Lupron may vary depending on the location and availability of the medicine. In addition, the version (Lupron Depot or Lupron) and milligramming also interfere. But to find out where to buy the cheapest medicine in your region, you can use the Consultation Remedies website .

See the average price of medicines:

  • Lupron Depot (3.75mg) box with 1 ampoule with powder for solution for intramuscular use + diluent + 1 syringe + 2 needles – the price ranges from R $ 579 to R $ 800;
  • Lupron Depot (7.5mg) , box containing 1 vial with powder for solution for intramuscular use + 1 ampoule of diluent + 1 syringe + 2 needles – prices from R $ 1781;
  • Lupron Depot (11.25mg) box with 1 ampoule with powder for solution for intramuscular use + diluent + 1 syringe + 2 needles – the price varies between R $ 1,690 to almost R $ 2,600;
  • Lupron (3.75mg) box with 1 ampoule with lyophilized powder for solution for subcutaneous use + 1 diluent bottle with 2mL – the price varies between R $ 660 to R $ 760;
  • Lupron (5mg / mL) box with 1 ampoule containing 2.8mL of solution for subcutaneous use + 14 syringes – the price ranges from R $ 640 to R $ 955;
  • Lupron (11.25mg) box with 1 vial of powder for solution for subcutaneous use + 1 diluent vial + 1 syringe + 2 needles – the price is close to R $ 2,100.

* Prices consulted in February 2020. Prices may change.

Does Lupron Depot have generic or similar?

The medicine Lupron Depot is a reference medicine from the AbbVie laboratory. It does not have a generic version yet.

However, there are similar versions . The instructions on the package insert for these drugs follow the same basis as Lupron Depot, that is, they can be used in the same cases.

It is worth mentioning that one should never change, or use simultaneously, the medication prescribed by another version (reference, generic or similar) without the approval of the doctor responsible for the treatment.

Check out the similar versions and their price range *:

  • Lorelin Depot (3.75mg) – has a maximum price (PMC) of R $ 720;
  • Lectrum (3.75mg) – the price is around R $ 178, but can reach up to R $ 760;
  • Lectrum (7.5mg) – the price is usually around R $ 200, but can reach up to R $ 1,970 according to the PMC (maximum consumer price).

* Prices consulted in February 2020. Prices may change.

Does Leuprorelin Acetate have SUS?

-Yeah . Leuprorelin acetate (active ingredient in Lupron) is present in the List of Essential Medicines (RENAME) 2020.

Therefore, it must be provided by the Unified Health System (SUS). In all cases, it is worth mentioning that it is only possible to have access to the medicine with a medical indication.

How to budget?

In cases of non-availability of the drug via the Unified Health System (SUS), patients with a medical report can make a judicial request to receive the treatment paid for by the Federal Government or even by the Health Plan – if applicable.

Thus, it is necessary to open a process in accordance with the stipulated requests. Among them is the presentation of documents such as: medical report, exams, standard requirement and budget of 3 pharmacies .

To facilitate the procedure, it is possible to count on the assistance of a high-cost medication quotation advisory, which provides a personalized quote.

When accessing the link , make your registration – it is necessary to inform some personal data and also which is the medicine in question. At the end, just click on “request quotes” and wait for the return.

We know that many people have pathologies and disorders with hormonal cause or interference. It is due to this fact that medicines like Lupron Depot and its similar ones are important for a safe and effective treatment.

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