April 30, 2017
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Larin Fe

"Despite the potential for adverse maternal and fetal outcomes, contraceptive use in women with certain medical conditions is suboptimal, according to a new study.

Steven W. Champaloux, PhD, MPH, a scientist in the Division of Reproduc"...


Larin Fe



Serious ill effects have not been reported following acute ingestion of large doses of oral contraceptives by young children. Overdosage may cause nausea, and withdrawal bleeding may occur in females.

Non-Contraceptive Health Benefits

The following non-contraceptive health benefits related to the use of oral contraceptives are supported by epidemiological studies which largely utilized oral contraceptive formulations containing estrogen doses exceeding 0.035 mg of ethinyl estradiol or 0.05 mg of mestranol (79 to 84).

Effects on menses

  • Increased menstrual cycle regularity
  • Decreased blood loss and decreased incidence of iron deficiency anemia
  • Decreased incidence of dysmenorrhea

Effects related to inhibition of ovulation

  • Decreased incidence of functional ovarian cysts
  • Decreased incidence of ectopic pregnancies

Effects from long-term use


Oral contraceptives should not be used in women who currently have the following conditions:


79. The Cancer and Steroid Hormone Study of the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: Oral contraceptive use and the risk of ovarian cancer. J.A.M.A., 249:1596–1599, 1983.

80. The Cancer and Steroid Hormone Study of the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: Combination oral contraceptive use and the risk of endometrial cancer. J.A.M.A., 257:796–800. 1987.

81. Ory, H.W.: Functional ovarian cysts and oral contraceptives: Negative association confirmed surgically. J.A.M.A., 228:68–69, 1974.

82. Ory, H.W., P. Cole, B. Macmahon, and R. Hoover: Oral contraceptives and reduced risk of benign breast disease. N.E.J.M., 294:41–422, 1976.

83. Ory, H.W.: The noncontraceptive health benefits from oral contraceptive use. Fam. Plann. Perspectives, 14:182–184, 1982.

84. Ory, H.W., J.D. Forrest, and R. Lincoln: Making Choices: Evaluating the health risks and benefits of birth control methods. New York, The Alan Guttmacher Institute, p.1, 1983.

This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

Last reviewed on RxList: 4/17/2014


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