What is the role of medroxyprogesterone in the treatment of hypoventilation syndromes?

Updated: Jul 22, 2021
  • Author: Jazeela Fayyaz, DO; Chief Editor: Guy W Soo Hoo, MD, MPH  more...
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Medroxyprogesterone increases the central respiratory drive and it has been shown to be effective in obesity-hypoventilation syndrome and central hypoventilation syndromes. Its effectiveness in COPD is not clear. Initial studies documenting a reduction in hypercapnia with treatment with medroxyprogesterone were performed in the 1960s. [22]

More recent studies also have documented a decrease in hypercapnia in patients with obesity-hypoventilation syndrome with associated hypercapnia while receiving total daily doses of 60 mg of medroxyprogesterone in divided doses 2-3 times per day. [23]

However, the drug does not improve apnea frequency or symptoms of sleepiness. In addition, the risk of venous thromboembolism is increased with progestational agents. [9] Many experts do not currently recommend progesterone therapy.

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