New birth control pills might increase blood clot risk
Posted November 7, 2011
NEW YORK, N.Y. — The 10.5 million American women taking birth control pills have long been warned of the risk of blood clots associated with them, but new research suggests that some recently developed oral contraceptives might increase that risk significantly.
A study of 330,000 women in Israel, led by Dr. Jennifer Wu from Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, showed that clots were more likely for those who were taking Yaz and Yasmin, pills that are fairly new on the market and contain the synthetic hormone drospirenone.
"I would probably avoid the ones that contain drospirenone just because of the risk of the blood clots in the lungs and the legs," Wu said.
She said the risk is highest in the first few months after starting the pill, but is still small overall. She urged women to discuss other risk factors, such as family history and smoking, with their doctor.
Similar research released last month by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration showed that women taking the Yaz pill were 75 percent more likely to develop a clot than women on older birth control pills containing a different hormone.
The FDA plans to meet next month to discuss the contraceptive's safety.