Microgestin is a birth control pill that is used for the safe prevention of pregnancy. It is a kind of a combined oral contraceptive that contains two synthetic female hormones, namely the compound of estrogen known as the ethinyl estradiol and the synthetic progesterone named norethindrone. It functions by inhibiting the process of normal ovulation and causing the membrane of the cervical mucus and the uterus or the endometrium to thicken. This hinders the process of fertilization as the sperm finds it difficult to reach the uterus due to its thickening.
Picture 1 – Microgestin
Source – flickr
Microgestin is normally available in packs containing 21 tablets which are meant to be taken regularly for a period of 21 days. The tablets are supposed to be taken at the same time each day. Some of the famous microgestin brand names are Loestrin and Junel. In fact, loestrin and junel microgestin are generic names of these drugs .
Microgestin Fe 1/20 or 1.5/30
The marketing of microgestin birth control pills with the suffix ‘fe’ is connotative of the fact that such microgestin tablets also contain ferrous fumarate which is a supplement of iron. Since microgestin is actually approved for women who have already experienced menstruation earlier, the iron content in microgestin, i.e., microgestin Fe helps in renewing the iron lost due to menstrual bleeding.
Along with this, the use of microgestin has certain other advantages such as the occurrence of regular but predictable menstruation, the reduction of menstrual pain as well as the decreased possibility of endometrial or ovarian cancer. It should be primarily kept in mind that microgestin prevents pregnancy and not protection from sexually transmitted diseases.
Microgestin Side Effects
The regular use of microgestin as prescribed by the doctor does not wipe away the harmful effects that it has on the body. The side effects of microgestin are also quite a few a numbers which may either be mild or serious depending on the dose and the nature of its use.
The microgestin fe side effects which are mid in nature may be enumerated as the following:-
- Microgestin allergic reaction may cause hives, problems of breathing, itching and mouth swelling, the development of rashes and wheezing.
- A feeling of nausea accompanied with vomiting and stomach cramps.
- The tanning or the darkening of the face and the occurrence of freckles.
- Hair loss.
- Microgestin weight gain or loss.
- Sudden numbness and feebleness.
- Sudden headache accompanied with eye pain and dizziness.
- Auditory or speech problems.
- Pain in the chest and the body.
- Swelling of the breast, its tenderness and a painful feeling.
- Eye problems may also arise due to this especially among those using contact lenses.
- Microgestin acne is also a mild side effect of its use.
- Menstrual problems along with itching of the vagina or its bleeding.
- The use of microgestin may also reduce the sexual drive of a person.
However, if the mild side effects go unchecked and one does not take precautionary measures, the conditions may precipitate to serious microgestin side effects. Some of the serious ones caused due to the side effects of strong microgestin ingredients may be mentioned as follows:-
- Yellowing of the eyes or skin, dark yellowish urine and clay colored stools may indicate damage caused to the liver.
- Heavy bleeding from the vagina.
- Reeling of the head due to high blood pressure or hypertension.
- Heart problems may also arise due to high cholesterol levels caused due to the side effects of microgestin fe.
- Severe headache, extreme weakness and highly detectable speech or vision changes may be signs of a stroke.
- The occurrence of migraines or changes in the nature of their occurrence.
- The formation of lumps on the breast or the discharge of fluids from the same.
- Calf pain, leg cramps and the swelling of the leg or the foot may indicate the clotting of the blood in the leg.
- Microgestin may also cause the clotting of blood in the lungs which is indicated by the shortness of breath, pain in the chest and the ejection of blood along with cough.
- Chest pain of a severe nature may be the symptom of an heart attack.
- Microgestin breakthrough bleeding is also a serious but common side effect of microgestin.
- Amenorrhea or the absence of menstruation is also a serious side effect of using microgestin. Although fertility is regained by most women within six months of stopping microgestin, yet it can be a serious affair if fertility does not regain in time.
So, due to such harmful side effects of microgestin fe its use is not so easily encouraged. Moreover, as a precautionary measure, people suffering from problems such as blood clot, hormonal cancer, diabetes, and liver diseases are prohibited to use microgestin or any other birth control pills. In place of the same, the use of condoms and other physical contraceptives such as Copper-T is advisable. People vulnerable to lung and heart disease are not permitted to use this oral contraceptive as it may prove to be fatal.
Besides, the use of microgestin is permitted only after 4-6 weeks of delivery or during breast feeding so as to avoid the possibility of causing harm to the new born baby. Smoking or the use of tobacco is also prohibited during the period of use of microgestin.
Although the regular use of microgestin helps in preventing pregnancy, yet one must be aware as not to miss a dose as microgestin missed period may increase the possibility of pregnancy. But the use of this pill must be supervised by a doctor and one must follow the aid and advice of the same so as to prevent the birth of a baby as well as adopt the ways to tackle the side effects of microgestin.
Written by akshay
on December 23rd, 2010. The article was last updated on December 23rd, 2010