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Vivelle Dot vs Generic Estradiol: Comparing Hormone Patches

women’s health

February 23, 2024
Vivelle Dot vs Generic Estradiol

Transitioning into menopause brings with it a host of life changes. Products like the Vivelle Dot can help. Why?

When menopause arrives, your body reduces its production of both estrogen and progesterone. For years, or even decades, your body has relied on estrogen and progesterone to support a wide range of bodily functions—from bone health to skin and tissue moisture. Vivelle Dot, generic estradiol patches, and products like Climara and Minivelle help replace some of those lost hormones to ease your body’s transition.

Here’s the thing: While these meds are similar, they’re not precisely the same.

Which begs the question: Which is best for you?

Vivelle Dot vs. Climara vs. Minivelle: Choosing Hormone Therapies for Menopause

The Vivelle Dot, along with generic estradiol patches and alternative brands like Minivelle and Climara, are forms of hormone replacement therapy. These products allow you to place a patch on your skin that will deliver estrogen over a specified period of time.

Figuring out which is best for you may take time and experimentation.

It’ll also require working with a doctor to understand which of your options will be the most safe, effective, and helpful for you (and how long you should take it to ease the symptoms of menopause).

What is Vivelle Dot?

Vivelle Dot (Estradiol 17-b) is an estradiol transdermal patch. Doctors may prescribe it to women who are experiencing unwanted symptoms as menopause sets in—such as vaginal dryness, itching, and burning.

In years past, these and other symptoms have been accepted as a normal part of aging, but this doesn’t necessarily need to be the case.

You don’t have to suffer for years when menopause kicks in or say goodbye to sexual health or other aspects of your life that menopause may seem to affect.

If hormone replacement therapy (or HRT) can help you, Vivelle Dot may be an option. This may mean that people who are not yet in menopause can also benefit from Vivelle Dot (for example, if they are struggling with abnormal vaginal bleeding or ovarian disorders).

How Do You Use Vivelle Dot?

After getting a prescription for and purchasing Vivelle Dot, you’ll apply one Vivelle Dot patch to your skin once or twice a week as directed by your physician.

Fully clean and dry your skin, first, and select an area of unbroken skin. Avoid the breast area; typically, good places to choose include the lower stomach or upper buttocks.

Once affixed, Vivelle Dot will release estrogen into your body. Take note of your symptoms or any side effects that could occur, and work with your doctor as needed to determine a dose that works for you!

How Much Does Vivelle Dot Cost?

An eight-patch pack of Vivelle Dot can retail for as much as $208.00 in the United States.

That’s about $26.00 for just one patch—a patch that might last for a few days, or one week.

If paying over $200.00 every month or two for Vivelle Dot isn’t in the cards right now, you have options.

Through an international medicines site and Canadian online pharmacy like, you can buy a box of 8 patches of brand-name Vivelle Dot for about $42.00, or a savings of about 79%.

Are There Generic Estradiol Patches?

Yes, there are generic estradiol patches available. They may be difficult to find, and they may not offer precisely the same benefit as the brand-name option, but there are generic options on the market.

While generic estradiol patches are similar to Vivelle Dot in critical ways (e.g., their active ingredient is estradiol, and they offer transdermal delivery, as well as relief from unwanted menopause symptoms), they do differ.

For example:

  • Their delivery systems may be slightly different. Vivelle Dot ensures a consistent, slow, steady drip of estradiol seeping through the patch into the skin over several days. Generic patches may have different delivery tech or strategies, which can affect your experience with this HRT offering.

  • They may offer different doses of estradiol. Vivelle Dot comes in a wide range of doses, from 0.025mg to 0.1mg. This can help you find the strength of medication most suited to you, your symptoms, and your goals. Generic estradiol patches may not have as many options.

  • They may have different inactive ingredients. While generic estradiol patches can have a very similar ingredient list to the Vivelle Dot, for various reasons, generic ingredient lists might not match the brand ones exactly. This means generic medication manufacturers need to use different ratios of ingredients, or slightly different inactive ingredients.

    In many cases, this should not affect the results—but, if you’re sensitive to the new inactive ingredients, that can result in adverse reactions or reduced medication efficacy.

  • They may be less expensive. If you can find generic estradiol patches, you may find they’re less expensive than normal American retail prices for Vivelle Dot, at around $55.00 for a box of eight.

Generally, it’s a good strategy to find a pharmacy or pharmacy website that offers you reliable low-cost access to both brand-name and generic products, so you can make the best choice for you, regardless of access or price.

Vivelle Dot vs Generic Estradiol

Comparing Minivelle vs. Vivelle Dot vs. Climara Patch

Vivelle Dot isn’t the only brand-name estradiol patch. Here are a few other common options (and how they stack up with Vivelle Dot).

Minivelle vs Vivelle Dot

Minivelle (estradiol transdermal system) is another type of estradiol transdermal patch that is often prescribed for postmenopausal symptoms which actually, is one of the main differences between Minivelle and Vivelle Dot: Minivelle tends to be used by women going through menopause, while Vivelle Dot can be used for many reasons (including atrophic vaginitis, hypoestrogenism, and ovarian conditions).

Both of these medications are transdermal and come in several different doses.

Minivelle is slightly more expensive than Vivelle Dot. In America, a patient might pay around $285.00 for a box of eight Minivelle patches.

However, through, you can buy eight brand Minivelle patches for about $200–a savings of around 29%.

Vivelle Dot vs Climara Patch

Climara Patch (estradiol) is a transdermal HRT patch, like Minivelle and Vivelle Dot. Like those other options, Climara Patch offers benefits such as fewer systemic symptoms and reduced metabolism of the active ingredient (since it doesn’t need to pass through the entire body before making its way to its target tissue).

Climara is often considered a secondary option after Vivelle Dot. It offers similar benefits and comes in similar dose ranges. Climara patches only need to be used once per week, instead of twice, however, which can be a helpful option if twice-per-week patches conflict with your lifestyle or schedule.

In America, Climara is markedly more expensive than Vivelle Dot, and even Minivelle. American patients may pay as much as $200.00 for a box of four patches of brand Climara.

Through, you can buy four patches of brand Climara for about $60.00–savings of around 70%.

Is Vivelle Dot Being Discontinued?

Since these three estradiol hormone patches provide similar functions and benefits, you might wonder: Why wouldn’t you just go for the most popular and lowest-cost option—the Vivelle Dot?

There are several reasons.

For one, hormone therapy is very individual and personal. What works for one person may not work for you, and what you need from your treatment may evolve over time. Having a few options at your disposal can help you make sure you don’t miss out on care. It also gives you alternate therapies to fall back on if you develop unwanted side effects.

However, there’s another good reason to avoid reliance on Vivelle Dot if you’re an American patient: As of late 2023, the Vivelle Dot has been discontinued in the United States. While you may be able to find it through online and international pharmacy websites, it will no longer be in your corner brick-and-mortar pharmacies.

If this affects your current care plan, talk to your doctor, or consider browsing the supplies available through international pharmacies. You may be able to consider another form of HRT, or get the products you need by thinking outside your country’s borders.

Vivelle Dot and Estradiol Patch User’s Guide

Whether you’re using Vivelle Dot, Climara, Minivelle, or a generic estradiol patch, there are some things you need to know to use it as helpfully and safely as possible.

What Are Vivelle Dot Side Effects?

Vivelle Dot, Climara, Minivelle, and generic estradiol patches deliver a version of estrogen directly to your body. This can result in unintended side effects from time to time. It’s important to know what’s expected, what should go away with time, and what’s a severe symptom that you should follow up on or report.

Common side effects of these HRT patches include:

  • Headaches
  • Back pain
  • Nasal congestion
  • Vaginal itching
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Weight gain
  • Bloating
  • Nausea

Not everyone will experience these side effects, but they do happen often. Typically, as your body gets used to your dose, these symptoms will subside. If they don’t or if these symptoms cause you a significant amount of suffering, talk to your doctor to learn more about your other options.

Less common side effects associated with estradiol patches include coughs, diarrhea, body aches, and even ear congestion.

Since the range of side effects is relatively wide, it’s a good idea to track your symptoms after you start taking your medication. That way, you have a concrete way to look back on what happened.

It’s also good to be aware of the rare but severe side effects of estradiol patches. In some extremely uncommon cases, estradiol patches can result in an increased risk of stroke, blood clots, and even breast cancer. If you have a family history of any of these illnesses or you believe you’re experiencing symptoms related to these diagnoses, talk to your doctor immediately.

Instructions for Vivelle Dot General Use

Once you’ve purchased your Vivelle Dot (or Minivelle, or Climara, or generic estradiol patches), you need to use them properly for maximum benefit.

Here’s a general overview of the right procedure for these HRT patches.

  1. First, make sure you’ve talked to your doctor about proper use protocol. Very likely, they’ll want you to follow manufacturer directions, but (depending on your goals and symptoms) your doctor may have specific recommendations for you.
  2. Read the instruction manuals that come with your HRT patches. While they may seem simple to use or you may believe you have the general instructions already, the insert that comes with your actual medication should have the most up-to-date, relevant information.

    Scan these instructions before use, even if it’s just to make sure that nothing seems out of place or like new information.

  3. Clean and dry your skin before affixing the patch. You don’t want there to be anything between the medication and your skin.
  4. Don’t put the patch on your chest or breast area, and don’t put the patch anywhere there will be constant pressure or friction (like where you fasten or belt your pants). The lower stomach and upper buttocks are popular administration sites.
  5. Pull the patch out of its packaging, stick it on your skin, and ensure there are no air pockets. Remove the patch when the instructions say to do so—e.g., after 24 hours.
  6. Unless the instructions say otherwise, it may be a good idea to rotate your application sites on occasion to keep your skin as healthy as possible.

If you are pregnant or are planning on becoming pregnant, talk to your doctor about your options. Vivelle Dot and other estradiol patches shouldn’t be used if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Vivelle Dot vs Generic Estradiol

Looking For Vivelle Dot, Minivelle, Climara, or Generic Estradiol Patches?

Managing your menopausal symptoms or navigating the complex treatment required for hormonal disorders can be challenging.

What shouldn’t be challenging is finding the medications you need, or figuring out how you can afford the care that’s required for your quality of life!

At, we understand that your time, your financial stability, and your health are all precious resources. That’s why we provide reliable, authentic brand-name medications like Vivelle Dot, Minivelle, and Climara in easy-to-find places with easy-to-understand information (and, of course, easy-to-afford prices!).

Want to see for yourself how simple it is to order the estradiol patches you need through an international and online Canadian drugs store? Check out our informative prescription medication pages, or chat with our friendly, experienced patient care representatives for more information or assistance placing an order.

The team at looks forward to supporting you and your health journey.

The information provided on the website is intended to facilitate awareness about healthcare products and medical conditions generally but it is not a substitute for professional medical attention or advice. You should always speak with a qualified healthcare practitioner before taking any prescription or non-prescription drug.
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