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What does it do?

Cyproterone blocks the effects of testosterone (a male sex hormone) in the body. In men it is used to treat prostate cancer or reduce sex drive. In women it is used to treat polycystic ovary syndrome, excess body hair, acne, or head hair loss.

Before you start

  • Tell your doctor if you have heart or liver problems, diabetes or depression, or if you have ever had a stroke or blood clot.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • Cyproterone can affect fertility in both men and women – discuss with your doctor.

How should you take it?

Take cyproterone regularly as directed with a glass of water.

What if you forget a dose?

If it is nearly time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the usual time. Otherwise, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not take two doses at the same time.

Can you take other medicines?

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products or recreational drugs.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Symptoms of liver problems including: yellow skin or eyes, itching, dark urine, pale bowel motions, abdominal pain

Tell your doctor immediately

Short of breath

Tell your doctor

Sore or enlarged breasts

Hot flushing, sweating

Less body and facial hair

Weight changes

Tiredness or weakness

Less interest in sex, trouble getting or keeping an erection

Tell your doctor if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • Cyproterone can impair your ability to do tasks such as driving or using machines. Alcohol makes this worse. Discuss your risk with your health professional. (search NZTA - Are you safe to drive?)
  • You will need regular blood tests while taking cyproterone to check if it is causing problems with your liver.

This leaflet contains important, but not all, information about this medicine.

Prepared by the MyMedicines Committee at Christchurch Hospital, Te Whatu Ora - Waitaha, New Zealand. March 2023

For more general information about this sheet and its contents, see: What does a My Medicines sheet cover?

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About My Medicines

My Medicines Patient Information Leaflets (PILs) contain important, but not all, information about the medicines they describe.

For more information about the sheets, see: What does a My Medicines sheet cover?

My Medicines is developed by a team at Te Whatu Ora – Waitaha. Our team is made up of doctors, pharmacists, and a non-medical person to help us keep to plain language. We also discuss our information with specialist health professionals or groups when needed