The steady drum beat of adverse medical reports and deadly side effects about the popular Yaz birth control pill and its variations continue to surface. Again another medical study has found that side effects of Yaz and Yasmin birth control increase the risk of a pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis or stroke blood clot injury, when compared to older birth control pills.
Israeli researchers, in a report out this week, say they found that drospirenone-based birth control pills increased the risk of venous thromboembolism by as much as 65 percent. This is the latest new study published on-line this week by the Canadian Medical Association Journal. There has been a flood of new studies in recent weeks to confirm the risk of blood clots from Yaz birth control.
The study on more than 300,000 Israeli women, found that women taking Yaz and Yasmin, which contain the fourth-generation progestin drospirenone, were 65% more likely to suffer blood clots than women taking levonorgestrel and other so-called second generation oral contraceptives.
The newer birth control pills were only slightly better against third-generation birth control with a 43% increased blood clot risk. The study failed to find any evidence of increased risk of heart attacks or strokes.
Venous thromboembolisms most commonly form in the leg veins, but can travel to the lungs, where they cause a pulmonary embolism.
It has long been known that women on the Pill have a small, although higher-than-average risk of blood clots. But recent studies have suggested the risk may be relatively higher with pills containing drospirenone—which include Yaz, Yasmin, Beyaz and Safyral, along with their generic equivalents.
This study is only the latest evidence that the Bayer birth control Yaz and Yasmin pills are likely more dangerous than older birth control pills. Other medical studies in Europe and including one by the FDA, have come to similar conclusions.
Less than two weeks ago the FDA released a new drug safety report that found Yaz, Yasmin birth control side effects increased the blood clot risk by as much as 75% when compared to older oral contraceptives. That report was based on records for more than 800,000 U.S. women who used the Pill between 2001 and 2007.
A third study, published last month in the British Medical Journal, found that women taking newer birth control pills, including Yaz and Yasmin, may face twice the risk of developing blood clots when compared to women taking levonorgestrel birth control pills.
An FDA advisory committee is scheduled to examine the data surrounding the risk of health problems from Yaz and Yasmin at a meeting in December 8.
Drospirenone is a newer type of synthetic version of progesterone, that is used in combination oral contraceptives that also include estrogen. It was originally introduced by Berlex Laboratories in Yasmin. Once Berlex was acquired by Bayer Healthcare an updated version of Yasmin was introduced called Yaz. More recently, Bayer introduced a third version, marketed as Beyaz, which includes a folate supplement. Generic versions of Yaz and Yasmin are also now available from other manufacturers. Generic versions of Yaz and Yasmin include Ocella, Gianvi, Loryna, Safyral, Syeda and Zarah.
The findings of these recent studies appear to confirm the allegations brought in thousands of Yaz lawsuits and Yasmin lawsuits filed on behalf of women who experienced serious and sometimes deadly blood clots after using the birth control pills. The plaintiffs complaint alleges that Bayer failed to adequately warn about the increased risk of blood clots from Yaz and Yasmin. Furthermore the plaintiffs complain that Bayer placed their desire for profits ahead of patient safety by minimizing the known risk in aggressive direct-to-consumer advertisements for the birth control pills.
Bayer is aggressively defending itself, denying any liability and points to its own post-marketing studies that have failed to turn up a heightened clot risk with drospirenone contraceptives versus older ones.