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Beyaz Just as Dangerous as Yasmin, Yaz

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Santa Rosa, NMGrace started taking Beyaz in 2006 but had to discontinue the birth control pill one year later. She went to her doctor complaining of swelling in her hands and feet, then her doctor found a blood clot.

Grace, age 26, says she was in excellent condition before taking Beyaz. “My doctor sent me to the hospital to get a CAT Scan and MRI with contrast dye,” says Grace. “They also found a small spot on my lung—apparently it is a mucus spot and not a Beyaz side effect, but it is freaking me out. Like Yasmin and Yaz, Beyaz belongs to the fourth-generation of birth control pills that contains drospirenone. They are all marketed by Bayer. Both Yaz and Beyaz contain the same doses of active progestin/estrogen: 3 mg of drospirenone, and 0.02 mg of estrogen (ethinyl estradiol).

The only difference between the other drospinerone birth control pills and Beyaz, which is one of the newer oral contraceptives on the market, is that it has 24 hormone pills that include levomefolate calcium or B vitamin/folic acid. (Ironically, the reason Beyaz contains folic acid is because it is recommended for women in their reproductive years.)

In December 2011, an independent FDA advisory panel recommended that all birth control pills containing the hormone drospirenone should have their labels updated to include warnings about blood clots, which includes Beyaz. The recommendation came on the heels of data that suggested contraceptives containing this synthetic hormone may put women at a higher risk for dangerous blood clots than older forms of birth control.

Unfortunately for many women who have developed blood clots, deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism after having taken these fourth generation birth control pills, older forms of oral contraceptives are out of the question. Doctors have told them that they can never take a hormone medication again—ever. And that also means no hormone replacement therapy to help treat menopause.

“I’m thinking about getting my tubes tied,” says Grace. “My boyfriend doesn’t want kids and neither do I so I’m thinking about my health. I won’t ever take another birth control pill again.”


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