The news story combining footage of a young woman experiencing a stroke at her office desk and informing viewers that the young woman had been taking one of the commonly prescribed combined oral contraceptives containing drospirenone was distressing, anxiety provoking viewing. The story will cause some women to question the safety of the combined pill and could see some stopping abruptly out of fear.

Stroke is a rare condition in young women of reproductive age. The risk is estimated to be 2 per 10 000 women in a year, and increased with age. Some studies suggest that the use of a combined oral contraceptive(COCP) increases the risk 1 fold , to 4 cases of stroke per 10 000 women using the pill in a year.

Some women have an increased risk of stroke , those who smoke, women with high blood pressure, women with migraine and aura , especially if overweight and some families due to inherited factors. It is important to talk to your doctor about your medical history , although sometimes there are no factors which could help predict a rare event will occur.

As for all contraceptive methods , it is important to consider the advantages and disadvantages when choosing a method best suited to an individual . For most women the advantages of using the combined oral contraceptive pill outweighs the risks.

There are many pill types available in Australia . The best pill choice for your individual circumstances can be discussed with your doctor .


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