What are the possible risks of combined hormonal birth control?
“Combined hormonal birth control is included the birth control pills, NuvaRing (vaginal ring), and the Ortho Evra (patch),” Dr. DuMontier explains. “These methods are safe for most women but they are associated with a slight increased risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), heart attack, and stroke. For some women, this risk is higher. This includes:
• Women older than 35, who smoke more than 15 cigarettes per day
• Women with multiple risk factors for cardiovascular disease such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes
• Women with a history of stroke, heart attack or deep vein thrombosis
• Women with a history of migraine headaches with aura
Combined hormonal contraceptives should not be used during the first three weeks after a delivery because the risk of DVT is higher in the weeks after childbirth. If you have additional risk factors for DVT, combined hormonal contraceptives should not start until at least four to six weeks after childbirth.”
What is an IUD?
“An IUD stands for intra-uterine device,” Dr. Donnelly says. “It is a small, T-shaped device that is a form of long-acting reversible contraception. There are several varieties, some contain the hormone progesterone and one is hormone-free. They are placed in the uterus during an in-office visit and can be effective for three to 10 years, depending on the type. One form, Mirena, can also be used to treat heavy, painful periods.”
Erin DuMontier, MD and Laura Donnelly, MD, are a part of BJC Medical Group and on staff at Missouri Baptist Medical Center. They practice at the Sunset Hills location of OB-GYN Associates of St. Louis, located at 3844 S. Lindbergh Blvd., Suite 235, Sunset Hills, MO. To make an appointment or find out more about them, please call (314) 725 -9300 or book online for Dr. DuMontier here >> or Dr. Donnelly here >>
To read other FAQs from the OB-GYNs, like breast health and the HPV vaccine, click here.