Contraceptives can come in many forms and are used to prevent pregnancy in women who meet basic eligibility requirements regarding their current health. For example, some forms of contraception may not be effective for women who smoke regularly or who use conflicting medications. Contraceptives of all kinds have been under investigation since their conception in the 1960s and rise in popularity ever since.
While some forms of contraception may be perfectly safe, new contraceptives are constantly being developed, and with every new contraceptive comes new risks. Some contraceptives have proven so harmful to patients that they require litigation from injured women against these pharmaceutical companies. If you or a loved one were injured due to a dangerous contraceptive, reach out to a product liability attorney to discuss your options for physical and financial recovery.
The following are three contraceptives which have been linked to dangerous health conditions:
- Yasmin (Yaz): Yasmin, also called “Yaz”, is a common oral contraceptive used to prevent pregnancy. Unlike some other oral contraceptives, Yaz and similar contraceptives contain drospirenone, a substance currently under investigation by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). While Yaz is certainly effective at preventing unplanned pregnancy, it has been linked to dangerous blood clots in patients. These blood clots present significant dangers in several ways, primarily by traveling into the brain and causing a stroke. However, other risks associated with these blood clots include heart attacks, breathing difficulty, and even blindness, depending on where the blood clot travels. If you have recently been experiencing high blood pressure after starting Yasmin, talk to your doctor immediately about a different contraceptive option.
- Nexplanon implant: The nexplanon contraceptive is a thin, flexible rod implanted under the skin in the upper arm of a patient, designed to prevent pregnancy for up to three years from the date of implantation. Nexplanon contains the hormone etonogestrel and is radiopaque, meaning that it can be detected through the use of X-rays and radiation. Unfortunately, this contraceptive implant presents similar risks to those associated with the Yasmin oral contraceptive, primarily in regard to dangerous blood clots which can lead to strokes and other “thrombotic” or blood-clot-related events. However, the Nexplanon implant presents an additional danger; migration of the implant into blood vessels or the pulmonary artery.
- Mirena Intrauterine Device (IUD): The Mirena IUD is a T-shaped device made out of flexible plastic which, after being inserted into the uterus, provides birth control. The Mirena IUD is a hormone-based IUD designed to release small amounts of progestin over time to prevent pregnancy, effective for up to five years after insertion. There are multiple risks associated with the Mirena IUD, including “false brain tumors” or pseudotumor cerebri, which can cause periods of blindness and over time can result in permanent vision loss. An additional and unrelated danger of the Mirena IUD is its risk of organ perforation and IUD migration. When an IUD perforates the wall of the uterus, it can affect not only a woman’s long-term fertility, but it can also allow the IUD to migrate outside of the uterus, damaging, perforating, and scarring other internal organs as well and often requiring corrective surgery.
While the above three contraceptives have been linked to dangerous health conditions, these are by no means the only potentially dangerous contraceptives on the market. It’s important to discuss any new form of birth control in detail with your doctor and to investigate any ongoing litigation regarding a contraceptive before starting a new one.
If you have suffered due to a potentially dangerous contraceptive, talk to a product liability attorney.
The effects of a dangerous contraceptive can be staggering; from infertility to strokes and heart attacks, and even death, an unsafe contraceptive can be life-altering. If you have experienced worrying symptoms you believe may be connected to your birth control, seek treatment from your doctor immediately. It is also a good idea to save the contraceptive so that it can be investigated in the future if you decide to pursue a recovery through legal means. To learn more about your options after suffering from a dangerous contraceptive, reach out to a product liability attorney sooner rather than later.