Sharon (not her real name) discovered a rash on her leg that quickly moved up to her pelvic area and spread down her other leg. At first, Sharon thought she had developed an allergy.
By the time she went to the doctor, Sharon was in agony and she could barely walk. She was diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis - blood clots - in both her legs. "You could actually see clumps of blood clots and they sent her immediately to the gynecologist, then the ultrasound determined that she indeed had blood clots," says her mother. That was just one week ago (Jan-10-06).
"A doctor gave her shots to dissipate the clots and they now have her on blood thinners," says Sharon's mother. "They told her to immediately stop taking birth control pills." Sharon, age 41, had only been taking them since last August, 2005.
According to Sharon's mother, the doctors are 99 percent sure her blood clots are due to the birth control pill Mircette. Now she has to undergo more ultrasounds to see if damage has occurred elsewhere.
Sharon is currently off work and can't even drive. Luckily her work said she was eligible for disability insurance in the state of California so she will apply for disability instead of taking sick leave.
Her doctor is puzzled, though, and she wants to make sure there is nothing else wrong with Sharon. "The doctor has never heard of anyone this young getting hit with something like this," says Sharon's mother. "And there is no history, on both sides of the family, of thrombosis, blood clots.
It was fortunate that she came in to the clinic for the rash when she did. "We own a home together and I could have walked into the house and found her dead in bed," her mother adds.
The oral contraceptive pill Mircette, manufactured by Organon, was approved by the FDA in 1998, reported [Centre Watch Clinical Trial Listing Service].
But according to the [Internet Drug Index], an increased risk has been associated with the use of oral contraceptives and placed in its WARNINGS section.
The following is a list of serious adverse reactions:
• Thrombophlebitis and venous thrombosis
• Cerebral hemorrhage thrombosis (bleeding from a ruptured blood vessel in the brain)with or without embolism
• Cerebral thrombosis
• Arterial thromboembolism
• Pulmonary embolism
• Gallbladder disease
• Myocardial infarction (heart attack)
• Hepatic adenomas or benign liver tumors
Last updated in June, 2004, Mircette tablets "are the first oral contraceptive to use a shortened hormone-free interval. The Mircette regime reduces the daily estrogen dose from the commonly prescribed 30-35 mcg level to the 20 mcg level, while maintaining cycle control and a favorable tolerability profile."
And on the website [Doctor's Guide], are more praises for the pill:
"This is good news for millions of women and their care givers who want new options for birth control," and "Clinical studies of this new drug indicate effective and well tolerated contraception for new patients, patients who change therapy, perimenopausal and postpartum women."
What it doesn't tell you unless you read the fine print, are the possibly life-threatening side effects. Some women are at risk of developing serious diseases if they take birth control pills such as Mircette.
The risks associated with taking Mircette and other oral contraceptive increase significantly if you smoke or have
• High blood pressure
• High cholesterol
• Clotting disorders, heart attack, stroke, angina
• Cancer of the breast or sex organs
Furthermore, cardiovascular disease risks may be increased by taking oral contraceptives over the age of 40 in healthy, non-smoking women.
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Mircette linked to Blood Clots
|. By Jane Mundy|
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