open access

Vol 85, No 12 (2014)
ARTICLES
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Selected aspects of oral contraception side effects

Hubert Wolski
DOI: 10.17772/gp/1887
·
Ginekol Pol 2014;85(12).

open access

Vol 85, No 12 (2014)
ARTICLES

Abstract

The first hormonal pill was approved in the 60s of the twentieth century. Since that time, oral contraception has been used worldwide by dozens of women due to its high availability, as well as relative ease and safety of taking. The main side effects of oral contraception include elevated risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE). Estrogens increase the probability of VTE development, depending on the dose in medication, and third-generation progestins increase the risk of VTE development more than older-generation progestins. Also, the coexistence of hereditary thrombophilia increases the risk of VTE development in women using oral contraceptives. Other side effects include changes in the carbohydrate and lipid economy. Progestins in oral contraceptives decrease HDL cholesterol levels but increase LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol levels. Additionally, estrogens are a recognized mitogenic factor for the epithelium of the mammary gland, acting proliferative on the glandular tissue and in the same way influence on the increased risk of breast cancer development. Patients sometimes complain about some subjective side symptoms such as headache, mood changes, nausea, back pain, breast pain and swelling, as well as decreased libido. Some patients discontinue oral contraception due to fear of side effects or temporary ailments before consulting their doctor, what may result in unintended pregnancy. The aim of the following paper was to present most frequent side effects of oral contraception, ways of their monitoring and diagnosis.

Abstract

The first hormonal pill was approved in the 60s of the twentieth century. Since that time, oral contraception has been used worldwide by dozens of women due to its high availability, as well as relative ease and safety of taking. The main side effects of oral contraception include elevated risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE). Estrogens increase the probability of VTE development, depending on the dose in medication, and third-generation progestins increase the risk of VTE development more than older-generation progestins. Also, the coexistence of hereditary thrombophilia increases the risk of VTE development in women using oral contraceptives. Other side effects include changes in the carbohydrate and lipid economy. Progestins in oral contraceptives decrease HDL cholesterol levels but increase LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol levels. Additionally, estrogens are a recognized mitogenic factor for the epithelium of the mammary gland, acting proliferative on the glandular tissue and in the same way influence on the increased risk of breast cancer development. Patients sometimes complain about some subjective side symptoms such as headache, mood changes, nausea, back pain, breast pain and swelling, as well as decreased libido. Some patients discontinue oral contraception due to fear of side effects or temporary ailments before consulting their doctor, what may result in unintended pregnancy. The aim of the following paper was to present most frequent side effects of oral contraception, ways of their monitoring and diagnosis.
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Keywords

hormonal oral contraception / side effects / thromboembolism // brest cancer / cardiovascular diseases

About this article
Title

Selected aspects of oral contraception side effects

Journal

Ginekologia Polska

Issue

Vol 85, No 12 (2014)

DOI

10.17772/gp/1887

Bibliographic record

Ginekol Pol 2014;85(12).

Keywords

hormonal oral contraception / side effects / thromboembolism // brest cancer / cardiovascular diseases

Authors

Hubert Wolski

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