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Thrombosis, or blood clots as they are colloquially known, tend to manifest naturally in men more than women. Women, however, are at risk for blood clots primarily because of pregnancy, birth control, and other hormonal therapies men do not generally take, according to StopTheClot.org.

Birth control pills are the most common form of contraceptive used in the U.S., and carry a high risk of blood clotting. Women who take birth control pills are generally three to four times more likely of developing a blood clot than women who do not take the pill.

It should be noted that the chance of a woman developing a blood clot as a result of taking birth control pills is still relatively small. Only about one in 3,000 women develop a blood clot because of birth control, but if a woman has a history of thrombosis in her family, the risk increases significantly.


Sometimes prominent drugs are recalled and no one knows about it. This was the case with a 2010 Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recall of the birth control Yaz, a contraceptive approved by the FDA for use among women as young as 14 years old. Yaz and Beyaz—a similar FDA-approved medication made by the same manufacturer, Berlex, Inc.—hit the market when it was approved in 2006, according to Drugs.com. Beyaz is primarily used to treat acne, while Yaz is marketed as the contraceptive. The only warnings on the Yaz website for either drug alert women who smoke and women over the age of 35 to increased risks of blood clot or stroke when taking the drug.

The trouble for the popular contraceptive came in 2010, when lawsuits started to pop up across the country alleging that women who were on the medication experienced a much higher rate of blood clots than the manufacturer had described. Bayer, the parent company for Yaz, was sued in 1,100 lawsuits that year, according to CBSNews.com. When Bayer began to face these lawsuits, Yaz was its best-selling product, according to CBS. As a result, one may think that a recall of the product would have been widely publicized. Not so.

The FDA issued a recall of the drug in November 2009, but it never made consumer headlines. This regardless of the fact that it “involved 32,856 boxes of Yaz, at three packs per box, and 122,208 boxes of Ocella, an identical product,” reports CBS. Despite its magnitude, the recall was hidden in the “Enforcement Report” section of the FDA website, meaning that anyone who wanted to know about the recall would already have had to know to look there.


Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, a manufacturer of Mirena Intrauterine Devices (IUD) birth control, has faced several lawsuits in recent years for alleged complications that arise from having used the device. Earlier this month, Mirena made headlines in Bergen County, New Jersey, where nearly 1,000 new lawsuits were filed to date against the manufacturer. The lawsuits allege serious injuries due to “spontaneous migration of the IUD” in those who had the device implanted. Noted injuries include “uterine perforations, organ damage, scarring, and infertility.” There are an additional 600 similar lawsuits pending in southern New York.

An intrauterine device is a long-term contraceptive that is implanted into a woman's uterus. It can only be implanted by a certified medical provider, and has been in use since it was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2000. It was not until nine years later that the device was approved for use in women with extreme heavy menstrual bleeding. That same year, however, the FDA warned Bayer that their promotion of the intrauterine device did not adequately warn patients of the risks and overstated the benefits of using this type of birth control.

According to WebMD, disadvantages of the hormonal intrauterine device include the increased possibilities of ovarian cysts. These are noncancerous (benign) and tend to go away without the assistance of a medical professional. There are also hormonal side effects to a hormonal intrauterine device, which are similar to those experienced by women who use birth control pills. These can include acne, headaches, mood swings, and breast tenderness. Unlike many women who take birth control pills report, however, side effects such as these experienced by women who have a hormonal intrauterine device tend to go away after the first few months of use.


This April, a batch of ParaGard T 380A Intrauterine Copper Contraceptive devices were recalled due to a lack of assurance of sterility, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The device's parent company, TEVA Pharmaceuticals which is based in Pennsylvania, voluntarily recalled the devices from hospitals, clinics, and gynecologists across the country.

The ParaGard is a type of contraceptive device implanted into a woman to prevent unintended pregnancy. According to Drugs.com, its success rate is very high with only 1.5 percent of women, who were correctly using the device, reporting an unplanned pregnancy. The IUD device is only authorized to be placed and removed by healthcare professionals who have experience with such implementations. Medical warnings for ParaGard use include intrauterine pregnancy, ectopic pregnancy, pelvic inflammatory disease, immunocompromise, embedment, perforation, and expulsion.

This is not the first time that ParaGard has come under media scrutiny. Unrelated to the recall, a lawsuit was filed against TEVA in March of 2013 after the device embedded itself into one user's colon, reportedly causing her severe complications which resulted in mandatory colon surgery.


An intrauterine device (IUD) is a commonly preferred method of birth control used by many women, suggested for use in women who have had at least one child. According to WebMD, “an IUD is a small, T-shaped plastic device that is wrapped in copper or contains hormones.” It is implanted into the uterus by a medical professional, and stays in place, releasing hormones on a schedule for up to five years. Mirena is a popular hormonal IUD that “releases levonorgestrel, which is a form of the hormone progestin.” It is expected to be quite an effective method of birth control—according to WebMD, it “prevents fertilization by damaging or killing sperm.”

About one year ago, however, it was announced that the side effects of Mirena were severe enough to issue widespread warnings about its use. According to the Adverse Events Report and as reported by PRWeb.com, “the FDA has disclosed receiving over 45,000 AERS reports of women suffering complications while using the Mirena IUD.” The severe side effects reported by Mirena users included “device expulsion, device dislocation, and vaginal hemorrhage. In more than 6 percent of cases, patients required hospitalization or surgery,” PRWeb.com reports.

Since its approval by the FDA, many women have come forward and demanded justice for the damage Mirena caused to them. According to a different PRWeb.com report, “recent figures provided by the U.S. Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation show that there are currently at least 267 federal Mirena IUD lawsuits involving these allegations.” One woman in New Jersey who had to undergo surgery because of complications of her Mirena IUD named parent company Bayer in her suit. “As Bayer faces growing litigation over the Mirena contraceptive,” PRWeb.com reports, it has requested the lawsuits be examined in a court close to their U.S. headquarters in Middlesex, NJ.

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