Ortho Tri Cyclen (Norgestimate/Ethinyl Estradiol)

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Since 1960, women’s world has changed for the better. It is connected with the invention of contraceptive pills. Innovation in the medical sphere has sparked a new era of female birth control. And now, after many years, most of all women still prefer this method of contraception, in spite of the wide choice of alternative solutions.

One of the most popular oral contraceptives is Ortho Tri-Cyclen (Norgestimate/Ethinylestradiol). URL Pharma decided to reveal all information necessary to know in this article.

Structure and Composition

A synthetic hormone drug, containing norgestimate and ethinylestradiol. Released in pills – 21 pcs per pack.

Pharmacological action

Ortho Tri-Cyclen is a combined oral contraceptive product. It affects the pituitary-hypothalamic system, inhibits gonadotropin production, resulting in ovulation suppression. Affecting cervical mucus, it increases its viscosity, reduces fallopian tubes transportation function, changes endometrial implantation capacity.

Indications

Prevention of unwanted pregnancies.

Uses

Taken 1 pill a day, starting from the 1st day of the menstrual cycle, during 21 days, followed by a 7-day break. The drug should be taken at the same time of the day, for example in the morning. On the 8th day of break, to keep the contraceptive effect, drug reception is resumed regardless of whether menstruation-like hemorrhage has stopped by that time or not.

Side effects

  • menstruation-like hemorrhage;
  • blood-tinged spotting from the vagina;
  • increased vaginal secretion;
  • vaginal candidiasis;
  • cervical erosion;
  • increased or decreased body weight;
  • appetite disorders;
  • breast tenderness;
  • nipples discharge;
  • sickness;
  • vomiting;
  • dizziness;
  • migraine;
  • headaches;
  • cholelithiasis;
  • renal diseases;
  • water retention;
  • resolution of glucose intolerance;
  • chloasma;
  • loss of libido;
  • increased arterial blood pressure;
  • depression;
  • skin rash.

If you experience listed above symptoms, immediately consult a doctor.

Contraindications

Do not use this medication if you have of ever had:

  • hypersensitivity;
  • thrombophlebitis;
  • thromboembolism;
  • antithrombin III deficiency;
  • cerebrovascular disorders;
  • ischemic heart disease;
  • sickle-cell anemia;
  • breast and endometrial carcinoma and other estrogen-dependent tumors;
  • genitourinary hemorrhage of unknown etiology;
  • pregnancy;
  • lactation period;
  • hepatism;
  • liver tumor;
  • lipid storage disease;
  • diabetes;
  • arterial hypertension;
  • hemolytic anemia;
  • otosclerosis.

Use with caution

  • hepatic and gall bladder disorders;
  • epilepsy;
  • depression;
  • ulcerative colitis;
  • uterine fibroids;
  • mastopathy;
  • tuberculosis;
  • renal disease;
  • adolescence period (without regular ovulatory cycles).

Interactions

  • Barbituates, some antiepileptic drugs (carbamazepine, phenytoin), sulfanilamides, pyrazolone derivatives can enhance steroid hormones metabolism;
  • Effective concentration reduction can be caused by some antibiotics (ampicillin, rifampicin), due to changes in intestinal microflora;
  • When taken together with gestagen-estrogenic preparations antihyperglycemic drugs dosage regimen correction may be required.
    Interaction with alcohol – no data.

Special instructions

  • When missed pill reception (if more than 12 hours after the usual time of admission), until cycle ends, additional contraceptives are necessary (spermicidal suppositories, creams, condoms and so on), continuing taking the drug;
  • Women with cardiovascular disorders or hepatic functions disorders, arterial hypertension, water retention, diabetes, asthma, gall bladder disorders, uterine fibroids, depression, epilepsy should consult a doctor before using the drug;
  • Smoking women taking hormonal contraceptive drugs have an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases with serious consequences (myocardial infarction, blood stroke). The risk increases with age and depends on daily cigarettes amount (especially for women older than 35 years);
  • Before starting treatment and every 6 months general medical and gynecological examination is recommended (including breast, hepatic function examination, arterial blood pressure and cholesterol concentration in blood control, urine analysis);
  • The use after childbirth or abortion (miscarriage) is recommended not earlier than after the first normal menstrual cycle. In small amounts excreted with breast milk;
  • After treatment cessation female reproductive glands functions are rapidly completely recovered, which allows normal ability to conceive;
  • Diarrhea and vomiting reduce the contraceptive effect (additional non-hormonal methods of contraception are necessary);
  • Treatment should be immediately stopped in case of pregnancy, migraine-like headaches (if earlier they were not observed), with early signs of phlebitis or phlebothrombosis (unusual pain or distended vein on legs), biliousness, visual disorders, cerebrovascular disorders, stabbing pains of unknown etiology when breathing or coughing, chest congestion and pains, increased arterial blood pressure, as well as 3 months before planned pregnancy and approximately 6 weeks before planned surgical intervention, in case of prolonged immobilization;
  • Moderate blood-tinged discharges during course do not require treatment cessation, in case of severe hemorrhage the treatment is stopped and gynecological examination is carried out;
  • Drug efficiency decreases with regular use of ethanol.

Ortho Tri-Cyclen and Weight Gain

Many women experience great difficulties while taking birth control pills. Most of them gain weight and for a long time can’t get rid of it. This happens because these pills contain hormones. All birth control pills contain estrogen hormone.

Pharmacologists have not invented contraceptive pills that help to lose weight, but there are several brands, the use of which causes weight gain not as much as others. One of these drugs is Ortho Tri-Cyclen. Many women say that they gain weight much more slowly when taking these pills. Of course, each person is unique and the same drug for two different women can cause a completely different reaction.

Taking hormonal contraceptives, women should be aware of the fact that they may cause weight gain. Besides, hormonal preparations cause increased appetite. Women have nothing to do but to control the food amount consumed, reduce calories amount and eat more vegetable food. Regular exercises are also necessary. It can be running, walking, swimming, fitness, etc. Physical exercise should take at least one hour a day.

If weight gain is unacceptable for you, you should give up oral contraceptives and use alternative contraception methods. The most reliable one is a condom (that also protect you against STIs) and IUD. Condoms are quite expensive. So if your sexual partner is a regular and reliable, intrauterine device (IUD) would be the best solution that will protect you from pregnancy and will not affect your weight.