This is among the mountain of studies that will bombard the OB/GYN literature over the next several years, just as Lupron it’s predecessor did in the late 80’s and early 90’s. This statement is unbelievable but is one of many to come: Dr. Charles E. Miller, MD, director of minimally invasive gynecologic surgery at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ride, Illinois, said, “We have a drug that is very effective, that has a very low adverse event profile, and is tolerated by the vast majority of our patients.” Adverse events refer only to patient reported side effects. This drug is being marketed as a long term use drug. It would take years to really see the long term effects of dramatically lower estrogen in women. The metabolic effects such as weight gain and vascular disease are very slow and insidious and will invariably be blamed on other factors. Women would shutter to realize that lower estrogen equals more rapid skin aging, loss of collagen and hair loss. These factors have never been born out in studies but we see it clinically in all our patients with suppressed estrogen levels from a host of other reasons. In all the years Lupron was studied, it was never shown to be better than birth control use or oral progesterone like medications. The latter are dramatically cheaper than elagolix or lupron.
On another note, this drug may have some real place in reproductive medicine. Specifically, it will likely replace the injectable antagonist drug currently used in stimulation cycles. Based on initial pricing in addition to being oral, it seems to be significantly cheaper.