Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013
Dangerous blood clots during pregnancy remain relatively rare, according to a new study, but the risk of this potentially life-threatening complication may be higher in women who became pregnant through in vitro fertilization (IVF). More from The New York Times:
Swedish researchers compared 23,498 women who had given birth after I.V.F. from 1990 to 2008 with 116,960 women of the same age and general health who had natural pregnancies. The results appeared online last week in the journal BMJ.
Women with I.V.F. pregnancies had more than four times the risk of venous thrombosis during the first trimester, compared with those with natural pregnancies, and almost seven times the risk of pulmonary embolism. The difference narrowed, but persisted, as the pregnancies progressed.
The I.V.F. procedure induces multiple egg production with high doses of hormones, and the authors suggest that this may be the cause.
“Women who are going to have I.V.F. should know these findings,” said the lead author, Dr. Peter Henriksson, a professor of internal medicine at the Karolinska Institute. “And if they have had blood clots themselves, or have relatives with thrombosis, they should be treated with blood thinners.”
Image: Pregnant woman in hospital, via Shutterstock
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Tuesday, December 6th, 2011
In the wake of recent research showing elevated risk of blood clots and strokes for women who use new brands of birth control pills, the Food and Drug Administration is considering new safety measures for those products. The Associated Press reports:
Regulators could order new warning labels on several contraceptives that gained popularity in the last decade, including Bayer’s pill Yaz, which was the best-selling birth control pill in the U.S. for 2008 and 2009.
Yaz, its Bayer precursor Yasmin, and similar drugs use a version of a female hormone that appears to reduce side effects found in older drugs, including bloating and mood swings.
On Tuesday, a judge unsealed several court documents suggesting Bayer may have withheld data from FDA about the blood clots risks of its drugs. The documents stem from expert opinion gathered by personal injury lawyers suing Bayer on behalf of patients.
Image: Birth control pills, via Shutterstock.
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Friday, October 28th, 2011
The Food and Drug Administration has released a new study linking several new birth control pills, including the drug Yaz, to an increased risk of dangerous, even life-threatening blood clots. The Associated Press reports:
A new study released by the Food and Drug Administration reviewed the medical history of more than 800,000 women taking different forms of birth control between 2001 and 2007. On average, woman taking Yaz had significantly higher rates of blood clots than women taking older birth control drugs.
The agency also reports higher complications in women using the Ortho Evra patch from Johnson & Johnson and the Nuvaring vaginal ring from Merck & Co. Inc.
The FDA will hold a public meeting in December to discuss the findings further.
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Wednesday, September 28th, 2011
The Food and Drug Administration issued a statement Monday saying in an ongoing review of a number of studies, it has not yet reached a conclusion about the blood clot risk in certain brands of birth-control pills, but the agency “remains concerned” that the risk is too high. The FDA is tracking a number of birth-control pill brands that contain drospirenone, a form of the synthetic hormone progestin. The brands include Yaz (generics Gianvi and Loryna), Yasmin (generics Ocella, Syeda, and Zarah), Beyaz, and Safyral
From The Boston Globe:
The FDA plans to convene an expert panel in December to discuss the issue further but advises women taking birth control pills with drospirenone not to stop the product before talking to their doctors first. All pill users should be aware of blood clot symptoms — persistent leg pain, severe chest pain, or sudden shortness of breath. And those who smoke and are over 35 years old should avoid oral contraceptives altogether since the combination of all three can significantly increase the risk of serious cardiovascular complications including blood clots.
(image via: http://feministsforchoice.com/)
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