Ocella is a popular birth control pill that contains drospirenone, a “fourth generation” synthetic progestin that has recently been linked to a 75% increased risk of blood clots.
FDA Updates Ocella Safety Warnings
April 2012 — The FDA has recently announced that it will be updating the drug safety information for all birth control pills containing drospirenone. In a statement, they said: “The FDA has concluded that drospirenone-containing birth control pills may be associated with a higher risk for blood clots than other progestin-containing pills.” The FDA will be updating the drug safety information to warn about the increased risk of blood clots associated with drospirenone.
Ocella is a hormonal birth control pill. It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in July 2008 to prevent unwanted pregnancy. The FDA has also approved this medication to reduce mild acne and treat Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD).
Ocella is the generic form of the birth control pill Yasmin. Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals, Inc. invented Yasmin. When the patent on Yasmin expired, Bayer worked with a generic drug company called Barr Laboratories to begin creating a generic version of Yasmin, which was then sold under the brand-name Ocella.
Yasmin and Ocella both contain the same amount of hormonal ingredients, including the controversial drospirenone. Each “active” Ocella pill contains 3-mg of drospirenone, and 0.03-mg of ethinyl estradiol.
Ocella and Drospirenone
The drospirenone in Ocella has become a source of controversy, after researchers found that women taking birth control with drospirenone were 75% more likely to develop a blood clot, but drospirenone was no more effective at preventing pregnancy.
The risk of a blood clot increases for all women who are taking a birth control pill containing synthetic progestin. Combined hormonal birth control pills have been in use for many decades, and researchers had determined that older generations of synthetic progestin had a risk of approximately 4-6 women per 10,000 would develop a blood clot. Drospirenone is the newest type of synthetic progestin, and it has been in wide use for
Ocella and Blood Clots
Normally, blood clots are essential for healthy bodily function. They typically form after an injury occurs, which causes red blood platelets to stick together. These clumps of platelets get trapped in small vessels, and prevent broken vessels from bleeding to death.
Ocella blood clots are a little different. They develop spontaneously, even when there is no injury. Ocella blood clots also tend to form deep inside the body, rather than on the surface. Blood clots near the skin (such as varicose veins or a bruise) do not cause serious side effects, because they are filtered out of the bloodstream before they can reach any internal organs. One side effect of Ocella is deep vein thrombosis (DVT), in which blood clots form deep inside the body. These blood clots are not filtered out, and it is difficult for the body to dissolve them. DVT blood clots can travel to the lungs and cause one of the most serious side effects of Ocella: a pulmonary embolism. They can also cause heart attack or ischemic stroke. If a blood clot gets trapped in a major internal organ, it can cause tissue in this organ to die, resulting in organ failure, organ damage, or death.
Symptoms of a Blood Clot
Blood clots may form in the veins, which are blood vessels that bring blood to the heart. They may also form in the arteries, which are blood vessels that carry blood away from the heart and to the body. Ocella blood clots can form anywhere in the body, but usually form in the lower legs. The symptoms depend on the location of the blood clot. Symptoms may appear slowly, over the course of several hours. Or symptoms may appear suddenly, as in the case of a heart attack or stroke. Not all blood clots have symptoms. Around half of all cases of DVT have no symptoms.
Any time a blood clot is suspected, this is a 911 emergency. Do not wait. Symptoms of a blood clot may include, but are not limited to:
- Swelling in the affected area
- Change in skin color, whiteness or redness
- Loss of sensation
- Paralysis of one part of the body, loss of function
Ocella Side Effects
Thousands of women have reported severe side effects after using Ocella. If you have been injured by this medication, you may wish to seek justice and financial compensation for your injury. If you decide to file an Ocella lawsuit, you may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, decreased quality of life, lost income, and more.
Side effects of Ocella may include, but are not limited to:
- Blood clots
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
- Venous thromboembolism (VTE)
- Pulmonary embolism
- Heart attack (myocardial infarction)
- Gallbladder disease
- Hyperkalemia (toxic high levels of potassium)
- Irregular heartbeat (heart arrhythmia)
- Psychological trauma