Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group petitioned the FDA to pull the birth control patch, Ortho-Evra off the market, warning that it was far riskier than the pill.
Complaints about the Ortho-Evra weekly patch have risen since a 2005 investigation by The Associated Press found that patch users had higher rates of life-threatening blood clots than did women who took birth control pills.
Blood clots are a known side effect for estrogen-related products. Clinical studies have suggested that patch users have twice the risk of clots in the legs and lungs as do women who swallow the pill. This is because these patients absorb up to 60 percent more estrogen with the patch. The FDA updated the patch’s label in 2005, 2006 and earlier this year with clot warnings.
It is argued that the patch offered no better contraception in return for the extra risk of life threatening blood clots
Medical Analysis: Oral contraceptives are not without risk, as with any medical treatment the risk benefit has to be assessed. Deep venous thrombosis (DVT) which leads to pulmonary emboli can be life threatening and caution needs to be applied in women who have a previous hostory of DVTs and those over the age of 40.