Waist, Weight, and Birth Control PIlls

Hormonal contraception provides ovulation suppression and eventually this correlates with overall hormone control as well. Hormones have the ability to affect weight, affect weight gain, affect weight loss and cause fluid shifts that ultimately shouldn't alter the scale; and all these wight issues can affect the hormonal levels in turn.When the blood level of your contraceptive hormones change, the effect in a woman can be that she sees change in both her symptoms and even effectiveness of her pills. If levels of your hormonal contraception dip low escape ovulation can occur, and this is how the production of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone from the ovaries can alter,and patients can then develop bleeding or other undesirable side effects, such as pregnancy.  The levels have been known to change secondary to medications such as antibiotics or other medicines, and some foods could cause issues. At the time of vomiting or other minor illnesses, you may not actually get the full dosage of medicine absorbed. It's an important subject to discuss with your gyno. Women who are extremely overweight present challenges to hormonal contraception. Not only because many methods have not properly studied large groups of large patients, but the obese patient also has greater blood volume in which the hormones in contraceptive methods is distributed. This in effect will decrease their blood level and could put them at greater jeopardy of getting an unplanned pregnancy. When obese patients have surgery, the changes in how they absorb food and medication, as well rapid weight transition can put a woman at greater risk of hormonal level fluctuations from her contraception. Since 1/3 American women are obese, this subject of how they fair on hormonal contraception, is a common cause for concern among gynos. We have discussed the option of using the NuvaRing contraception or the patch both of which should have a more consistent blood level, rather than the oral contraceptive pill which might not be absorbed as well in the patient who has been banded or whom has had gastric banding. Even the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists stated that there "patients who have had bariatric surgery should consider non-hormonal methods" such as ParaGard or Essure, or barrier methods of contraception. So there are choices, but we will have to see what direction some of the studies go. In a recent editorial in Contraception by Zaher Merhi from the University of Vermont College of Medicine, it is pointed out that studies of blood levels need to be done, especially for the popular method of IUD with the hormone levonorgesterel: Mirena. Until these studies are done, you need to work closely with your gyno as your weight changes so that you can be protected from pregnancy when you aren't prepared, and prepared the best when you are ready for pregnancy. And then once pregnant if you have had weight loss or bariatric surgery there are other nutritional considerations.


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  2. Although weight loss IS an issue I'm concerned about, I'm worried that my Mirena device (scheduled to be inserted next week) is going to cause terrible break-outs for me. I've been on Seasonique for the past 5 years and they seem to calm them down between periods. I've always been pretty break-out prone, but have fair to nice skin despite a constant 2-3 spots on my face. Any thoughts on how the decrease in hormones with the Mirena might change this? I'm so excited about the pro's of Mirena, but deathly scared that acne could be the determining factor for me.

  3. Mirena IUDs are excellent contraception, and the new regulations allow for better coverage by most insurance plans. So we are very excited to inform women about the significant IUD benefits. When women ask about whether their acne is going to improve or worsen in relation to hormonal contraception, it really takes an evaluation to answer this question properly. Some women have hormonal acne, and this is well controlled by steroid contraceptives in the birth control pill. It may not be as well controlled by a Mirena IUD. Acne worsened by improper nutrition, hydration, skin care, or dermatitis probably won't be affected by hormonal methods as much. For women with more severe forms of acne, that are not cyclic, other forms of acne treatments and medications are really indicated, and hormonal control will have even less a role. Mirena IUD can be associated with increased acne for some women, but this is not universal by any means. Simple solutions are all one typically needs. At Women's Health Practice 217-356-3736 and Hada Cosmetic Medicine 217-693-4400 we can offer more in depth diagnosis and treatment solutions.


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