Yaz, Yasmin Increase Blood Clot Risks by 75 Percent, FDA Study Finds

A study funded by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) confirms that women who use < "http://www.yourlawyer.com/topics/overview/Yaz-Yasmin-Ocella-Lawsuit-Side-Effects-injury-clots-embolism-dvt">Yaz, Yasmin and similar new-generation birth control pills have a greater chance of experiencing a dangerous blood clot compared to those taking older versions of oral contraceptives. The FDA study was the second released this week to find that birth control pills like Yaz and Yasmin raise the odds that a woman will suffer a serious blood clot.

Yaz and Yasmin contain a synthetic form of the hormone progestin called drospirenone. Other oral contraceptives made with drospirenone include Beyaz, Safyral, Syeda, Loryna and Ocella.

The FDA study involved an examination of health records belonging to 800,000 American women using some sort of birth control. Compared to women using birth control pills made with an older form of progestin called levonorgestrel, women taking pills with drospirenone had a 75 percent greater chance of experiencing venous thromboembolisms (VTEs). A VTE is a dangerous type of blood clot that forms in the legs and can travel to the lungs.

The agency said it continues to have concerns about the safety of drospirenone birth control pills, but it has not told women to stop taking the potentially dangerous medications.

“If your birth control pill contains drospirenone, do not stop taking it without first talking to your health care professional,” the FDA said in a statement. “Contact your health care professional immediately if you develop any symptoms of blood clots, including persistent leg pain, severe chest pain or sudden shortness of breath. If you smoke and are over 35 years of age, you should not take combination oral contraceptives because they increase the risk that you could experience serious cardiovascular events, including blood.”

The agency issued a similar statement on September 26, based on a preliminary review of this same study.

The results of the FDA study were released just days after publication of a Danish study which found that oral contraceptives with new-generation progestins, including drospirenone, doubled the risk of VTE was published in the British Medical Journal. According to that study, compared with women not using hormonal contraception, the relative risk of suffering a blood clot increased sixfold among women taking birth control pills with drospirenone and other new-generation progestins. Among women taking a pill with levonorgestrel, the risk only increased by threefold.

Not all studies, however, have found increased risks with drospirenone. According to a report from The Washington Post, two studies published in 2007, conducted as part of the postmarketing requirements of the FDA or European regulators, did not find any difference in blood clotting between drospirenone and levonorgestral.

The FDA has scheduled a joint meeting of the Reproductive Health Drugs Advisory Committee and the Drug Safety and Risk Management Advisory Committee for December 8 to discuss the safety of drospirenone birth control pills.

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