- Reviewed by Anthony L. Komaroff, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Health Letter
A new medication may bring relief to women struggling with the exasperating hot flashes of menopause. In May 2023, the FDA approved fezolinetant (Veozah). It's the first drug specifically designed to reduce the frequency and severity of flushing and sweating spells that occur as a woman's estrogen levels fall. Unlike hormone replacement — the main treatment for hot flashes, which might raise risks of breast cancer or blood clots — fezolinetant is a nonhormonal drug that affects the brain's regulation of body temperature. The drug must be taken daily, and it must be accompanied by routine blood tests to check for signs of liver damage — a potential side effect. Other side effects can include abdominal pain, diarrhea, insomnia, or back pain. Other nonhormonal drugs used to treat hot flashes include certain antidepressants, blood pressure medications, and drugs that treat nerve pain.
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About the Author
Heidi Godman, Executive Editor, Harvard Health Letter
About the Reviewer
Anthony L. Komaroff, MD, Editor in Chief, Harvard Health Letter
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