About Yasmin, an Oral Contraceptive
Yasmin is the brand name for a birth control pill that is generically known as drospirenone. It is also a treatment for moderate acne and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) in women. Yasmin is produced by Berlex Laboratories, Inc. (now Bayer Healthcare Pharmaceuticals, as of 2008) as an oral contraceptive. It works to prevent pregnancy by changing the lining in a woman's cervix, making it difficult for sperm to reach an egg and in the uterus, making it hard for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterine wall. Yasmin is 99% effective in preventing pregnancy and has brought Bayer Healthcare $487 million in sales in the U.S. alone and $1.5 billion worldwide. Unfortunately, it has also been reported to cause some serious side effects since the FDA approved its use in May 2001.
What makes Yasmin dangerous?
Studies have shown that Yasmin is more dangerous than its predecessor contraceptives containing progestin, which is used to prevent pregnancy. Yasmin increases potassium levels to dangerously high levels, which can create some serious problems with regard to normal heart rhythms and other body functions related to salt and water balance. It also slows down blood flow which contributes to the forming of blood clots. When these blood clots travel to the lungs or the brain, they may cause strokes or pulmonary embolisms.
Other side effects include breast lumps, depression or mood changes, heart attack, high blood pressure, kidney and/or liver damage, migraines, vaginal bleeding and severe allergic reactions including swelling, hives and difficulties in breathing.
Yasmin vs. Yaz - Both Manufactured by Bayer Healthcare
Bayer Healthcare also manufactures Yaz birth control pills. The main difference between Yaz and Yasmin is in the level of estrogen contained in each pill compared to the level of progestin, specifically desogestrel. Yasmin contains a higher dose of ethinyl estradiol (estrogen) at 30 mcg, while Yaz has only 20 mcg of estrogen. The dosing schedule is different for Yaz as well. Patients are told to take pills with the active ingredient for 24 days and then take the placebo pills for only 4 days. Most contraceptive pills, including Yasmin, are on a schedule of taking the pill for 21 days and then 7 days of taking the inactive pill. This dosing schedule, however, does not appear to relate to the side effects associated with Yaz.
Talk to a Pharmaceutical Litigation Lawyer
If you are taking Yasmin and you experience abdominal pain, localized skin swelling or pain, feelings of despair, chest pain, confusion, lightheadedness, breathing difficulties, numbness in the extremities or on one side of your body or any vision problems, seek emergency medical care immediately. This may be a life-threatening situation. Or, if you or someone you care about has been injured from the use of Yasmin, please seek out experienced counsel by calling Napoli Bern Ripka Shkolnik, LLP and speaking with one of our pharmaceutical litigation attorneys.
Not only is your initial consultation completely confidential, but it is free of charge. We also handle pharmaceutical litigation on a contingent fee basis, meaning you pay no legal fees unless we win your case. Contact our office today.