[Study] Newer contraceptive pills linked with higher risk of deadly blood clots

Patients using newer, low-estrogen birth control pills may run a higher risk of developing deadly blood clots than those who use older versions of oral contraceptive.

A recent study shows women who are using pills containing drospirenone-based pills such as Yaz or Yazmin experienced non-fatal blood clots at a rate of two to three times higher than those on levonorgestrel-based pills such as Seasonique or Seasonale. Three out of 10,000 women who are on the drospirenone formulas experience a blood clot versus 1.2 out of 10,000 for the levonorgestrel-based pills.

One of the study’s lead researchers points out that either risk is still smaller than the risk of blood clots in pregnancy:

The [clot] risk in pregnancy is much higher than for any oral contraceptive,” study researcher Susan S. Jick, PhD, of Boston University School of Medicine, tells WebMD. “Nevertheless, women taking these pills or considering taking them should be aware that there is very likely an increased risk associated with their use.”

Researchers recommend prescribing levonorgestrel-based pills for women seeking an oral contraceptive unless contraindicated.