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Danish Study Warns of Increased Blood Clot Risk: Avoid Taking Regular Painkillers with Birth Control Pills


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A Warning Against Taking Regular Painkillers with Birth Control Pills

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A recent study from Denmark has raised concerns about the potential risk of blood clots when regular painkillers are taken alongside birth control pills.

Understanding the Link

Experts suggest that women should be aware of the connection between nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), commonly used for pain relief and reducing inflammation, and hormonal contraceptives.

Types of NSAIDs

NSAIDs include medications like ibuprofen, which are widely used to alleviate pain and reduce fever.

Risk Levels of Hormonal Contraceptives

High-risk hormonal contraceptives are those that contain 50 micrograms of estrogen or third- or fourth-generation progestogens. Moderate-risk contraceptives include other combined oral contraceptives, while low or no risk contraceptives include mini-pills and implants.

The Study Findings

The study, published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), analyzed health records of two million women aged 15 to 49 without any history of blood clots, cancer, hysterectomy, or related treatments. The researchers found that the risk of blood clots was higher in women taking ibuprofen while using combination birth control pills containing both progesterone and estrogen. However, the risk was lower in women using progestin-only birth control pills.

Additional Statistics

Over a span of 10 years, there were 8,710 cases of venous thromboses, with 228 women (2.6%) dying within 30 days of diagnosis. The study also revealed that NSAID use increased the occurrence of venous thromboembolic events, with four additional events per week for every 100,000 women not using hormonal contraceptives, 11 additional events in women using moderate-risk contraceptives, and 23 additional events in women using high-risk contraceptives.

Expert Advice

While the study did not establish a definitive link, experts emphasize the importance of informing women about the potential risks. Factors such as age, education level, pregnancy history, previous surgery, high blood pressure, and diabetes were taken into account during the analysis. Dr. Channa Jayasena from Imperial College London advises women to avoid taking birth control pills with painkillers if possible and highlights the significance of reducing blood clot risks through lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking and maintaining a healthy weight.


Daily Mail

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