Provera and Pregnancy
Not only can Provera interfere with ovulation, it is also not recommended for use during pregnancy. "Provera is a type of progesterone that is used to stop menstrual bleeding and when the drug is stopped, it causes withdrawal bleeding," says Daniel Roshan, M.D., a board-certified obstetrician and assistant professor at the New York University School of Medicine, who specializes in high-risk fetal medicine. "There is no use for it in pregnancy; however, other kinds of progesterone are used to support and maintain the pregnancy."
"Provera is for menstrual irregularity, and once a woman is pregnant, should not be taken," advises Dr. Roshan. "Progestrone suppositories or Prometrium (another type of synthetic progesterone) are okay to take if needed."
Oddly enough, the side effects of Provera are similar to the side effects of pregnancy: nausea, vomiting, breast tenderness, and headaches. But if you become pregnant or are thinking about becoming pregnant while taking Provera, you should tell your healthcare practitioner right away.
Provera does not cause miscarriage, but some studies have shown that there may be a link between certain birth defects in mothers who are exposed to progestins such as Provera during the first trimester of pregnancy. Provera has been classed as a category X drug by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, meaning that it can cause birth defects and is contraindicated for use in pregnancy.
Although Provera may affect ovulation and impair fertility, you are not advised to take Provera as a substitute for some other form of contraception because it does not prevent the release of an egg (ovulation). As Dr. Hakakha points out, Provera can prevent ovulation and thin the uterine lining, making it more difficult for an embryo to implant. "It is not, however, a form of birth control," she adds. Ask your doctor which type of contraception you should use while taking Provera; to avoid any drug interactions, consider a non-hormonal method.
Copyright © 2011 Meredith Corporation.