Painful Sex – A Reality for Many Women after Menopause

By on October 30, 2015
Patti G.

Many American women are affected by a common medical issue that few are willing to talk about – dyspareunia, or painful sex due to menopause. Dyspareunia is caused by changes that occur in the vaginal wall when estrogen levels decline during menopause.

There are many changes that happen in a woman’s body as she goes through menopause; however, moderate to severe painful sex can be one of the most bothersome symptoms and it can worsen over time if left untreated.

Now, a middle-aged woman from New Jersey is breaking the silence surrounding this sensitive topic by appearing in a new television ad. Patti G. decided to talk candidly about her own experience with moderate to severe painful sex after menopause as a paid spokesperson for Shionogi Inc. She is working with them to promote Osphena® (ospemifene), the only oral, non-estrogen pill for moderate to severe painful sex due to menopause.

Osphena works like estrogen in the lining of the uterus but can work differently in other parts of the body. Taking estrogen alone or Osphena may increase your chance for getting cancer of the lining of the uterus. Vaginal bleeding after menopause may be a warning sign of cancer of the lining of the uterus. Your healthcare provider should check any unusual vaginal bleeding to find out the cause; so tell them right away if this happens while you are using Osphena. Osphena may increase your chance of getting strokes and blood clots. You and your healthcare provider should talk regularly about whether you still need treatment with Osphena.

“I suffered silently with this condition for years and it got to the point where sex was very painful,” said Patti. “I finally talked to my doctor and she prescribed Osphena – an oral, non-estrogen pill that helped me with this condition. I know many postmenopausal women are experiencing this problem and I want to encourage them to talk to their doctor.”

Her clinician, Andrea Price, M.D., is also featured in the ad and explained there are very few women who feel comfortable speaking about the topic of painful sex after menopause. “Dyspareunia is one of those very personal medical conditions that many women have a difficult time discussing.

Even some healthcare providers have issues starting the conversation, which can result in women not being treated,” she said. “Treatment options, like Osphena, can significantly relieve moderate to severe painful sex due to menopause.” While lubricants can offer temporary relief, they may not address the underlying issue, which may get worse over time. Osphena can help improve specific vaginal tissue and, in clinical studies, most women experience relief in about 12 weeks.

Osphena is not for everyone. Osphena should not be used if you have unusual vaginal bleeding; have or have had certain types of cancers (including cancer of the breast or uterus); have or had blood clots; had a stroke or heart attack; have severe liver problems; are allergic to Osphena or any of its ingredients, or think you may be pregnant. Tell your healthcare provider if you are going to have surgery or will be on bed rest. Serious but less common side effects can include stroke, blood clots, and cancer of the lining of the uterus. Common side effects can include hot flashes, vaginal discharge, muscle spasms and increased sweating.

Dr. Price is grateful for women like Patti who aren’t afraid to speak up about their health. “I hope other women feel empowered to have a conversation after hearing Patti’s story. Don’t be embarrassed or assume that this is a normal side effect of menopause. Be proactive and talk to your clinician about treatment options.”

What is Osphena® (ospemifene) tablets?
Osphena is a prescription oral pill that treats moderate to severe painful intercourse, a symptom of changes in and around your vagina, due to menopause.

Important Safety Information for Osphena –

Most Important Information you should know about Osphena

Osphena works like estrogen in the lining of the uterus, but can work differently in other parts of the body. Taking estrogen alone or Osphena may increase your chance for getting cancer of the lining of the uterus. Vaginal bleeding after menopause may be a warning sign of cancer of the lining of the uterus.

Your healthcare provider should check any unusual vaginal bleeding to find out the cause; so tell them right away if this happens while you are using Osphena.

Osphena may increase your chance of getting strokes and blood clots.

You and your healthcare provider should talk regularly about whether you still need treatment with Osphena.

Call your healthcare provider right away if you get changes in vision or speech, sudden new severe headaches, and severe pains in your chest or legs with or without shortness of breath, weakness and fatigue. Osphena should not be used if you have unusual vaginal bleeding; have or have had certain types of cancers (including cancer of the breast or uterus); have or had blood clots; had a stroke or heart attack; have severe liver problems; are allergic to Osphena or any of its ingredients; or think you may be pregnant. Tell your healthcare provider if you are going to have surgery or will be on bed rest.

Possible side effects of Osphena Serious but less common side effects can include stroke, blood clots, and cancer of the lining of the uterus.

Common side effects can include hot flashes, vaginal discharge, muscle spasms and increased sweating.

Tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines and supplements you take as some medicines may affect how Osphena works. Osphena may also affect how other medicines work.

Please click here for Full Prescribing Information, including Boxed WARNING.

© 2015 Shionogi Inc. Florham Park, NJ 07932. All Rights Reserved. Osphena is a registered trademark of Shionogi and Co., Ltd. Osaka, Japan.

OSP15-WWW-045-00 10/15

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Painful Sex – A Reality for Many Women after Menopause