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Birth control pills are also known as oral contraceptives (OCs) or, simply, “the pill.” They offer protection against pregnancy by blocking the union of sperm and egg, thereby prevent"...
Kariva Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Kariva (desogestrel/ethinyl estradiol and ethinyl estradiol) Tablets are used as contraception to prevent pregnancy. It is a combination of female hormones. Desogestrel is a form of progesterone and estradiol is a form of estrogen. This medication is available in generic form. Common side effects include nausea, vomiting, headache, stomach cramping/bloating, dizziness, vaginal discomfort/irritation, increased vaginal fluids, or breast tenderness/enlargement. Acne may improve or get worse. Vaginal bleeding between periods (spotting) or missed/irregular periods may occur, especially during the first few months of use.
Kariva must be taken as directed. Dose is one white tablet daily for 21 days, one light-green (inert) tablet daily for 2 days followed by 1 light-blue (ethinyl estradiol) tablet daily for 5 days. One tablet is taken every day, at the same time, with no interruption between pill packs. Kariva may interact with acetaminophen, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), antibiotics, phenylbutazone, St. John's wort, seizure medicines, barbiturates, or HIV medicines. Tell your doctor all medications you are taking. Kariva must not be used during pregnancy. If you have just given birth or had a pregnancy loss/abortion after the first 3 months, talk with your doctor about birth control, and find out when it is safe to start using birth control that contains a form of estrogen, such as this medication. This medication passes into breast milk. This may affect milk production and may have harmful effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Our Kariva (desogestrel/ethinyl estradiol and ethinyl estradiol) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Kariva in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
- sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
- sudden headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
- chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
- a change in the pattern or severity of migraine headaches;
- nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
- swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet;
- a breast lump; or
- symptoms of depression (sleep problems, weakness, mood changes).
Less serious side effects may include:
- mild nausea, vomiting, bloating, stomach cramps;
- breast pain, tenderness, or swelling;
- freckles or darkening of facial skin;
- increased hair growth, loss of scalp hair;
- changes in weight or appetite;
- problems with contact lenses;
- vaginal itching or discharge;
- changes in your menstrual periods, decreased sex drive; or
- headache, nervousness, dizziness, tired feeling.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Kariva (Desogestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol) »
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Kariva Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: changes in vaginal bleeding (e.g., continuous spotting, sudden heavy bleeding, missed periods), problem wearing contact lenses, dark patches on the skin (melasma), unwanted facial/body hair, swelling of the ankles/feet, weight changes (gain or loss).
This medication may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) problems from blood clots (e.g., pulmonary embolism, stroke, heart attack). Seek immediate medical attention if you experience: sudden shortness of breath, chest/jaw/left arm pain, confusion, coughing up blood, sudden dizziness/fainting, pain/swelling/warmth in the groin/calf, tingling/weakness/numbness in the arms/legs, headaches that are different from those you may have experienced in the past (e.g., headaches with other symptoms such as vision changes/lack of coordination, existing migraines becoming worse, sudden/very severe headaches), slurred speech, weakness on one side of the body, vision problems/changes.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: lumps in the breast, severe stomach/abdominal/pelvic pain, mental/mood changes (e.g., depression, suicidal thoughts, persistent trouble sleeping), unusual tiredness, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Kariva (Desogestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol)»
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Kariva FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
An increased risk of the following serious adverse reactions has been associated with the use of oral contraceptives (see WARNINGS section):
There is evidence of an association between the following conditions and the use of oral contraceptives:
The following adverse reactions have been reported in patients receiving oral contraceptives and are believed to be drug-related:
The following adverse reactions have been reported in users of oral contraceptives and the association has been neither confirmed nor refuted:
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Kariva (Desogestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol) »
Additional Kariva Information
Kariva - User Reviews
Kariva User Reviews
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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