Yasmin Trouble From The Start

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Alarming safety concerns from the beginning—blood clots, venous and pulmonary thrombosis, stroke, heart attack—and now personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits. There are definitely better ways to prevent pregnancy.

Oral contraceptives, Yasmin and its generic version, Ocella, came under fire soon after European approval in 2000. Reports of Pulmonary Embolism (PE) and Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) prompted Dutch physicians to alert their colleagues of early possible trouble.

In April, 2002, a week before Yasmin was to make its United Kingdom debut, a British Medical Journal article stated that ‘Dutch GPs were being advised by their own professional body not to prescribe a new low dose, monophasic oral contraceptive, marketed under the name Yasmin, until studies have established whether it’s as safe as other contraceptive pills.’

The questionable medication contains 30-mcg ethinylestrdiol and 3 mg drospirenone. Progestin drospirenone (DRSP) is considered a “fourth generation” classification and could be the problematic ingredient.

The Dutch College of General Practitioners contends that ‘second generation’ pills are the prudent choice since Yasmin lacks epidemiological data on thrombosis danger. Also, over 40 cases of venous thrombosis among women taking Yasmin have been reported in Europe.

Two were fatal including a 17-year-old Dutch woman who collapsed and died after a six-month prescription. The autopsy revealed she died of a massive pulmonary embolism although she had no previous risk factors for thromboembolism.

Other troubling Dutch cases include a 28-year-old patient who switched birth control pills from Marvelon (ethinylestradiol with desogestrel) to Yasmin (ethinylestradiol with drospirenone). She developed thrombosis in one leg a few months later.

A 45-year-old woman developed deep vein thrombosis, also in one leg, after taking Yasmin for two months, as did a slightly older female who was on the pill for three months.
It took only 17 days for a 35-year-old to suffer pulmonary thrombosis while on Yasmin.

These suspected adverse drug reactions were cited in the February 2003 copy of the BMJ titled “Thromboembolism associated with the new contraceptive Yasmin”.

Why, then, did the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approve Yasmin and its similar but newer version YAZ, another “fourth generation” drug? Now undeserving American women are plagued with blood clots, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, stroke and heart attack associated with Yasmin, Ocella and Yaz side effects.

The judicial system will sort that out….but it will be too late for some.

All this was preventable had the FDA paid closer attention to the European medical community and the unfortunate Yasmin victims there.