Reporting Dr. Maria Simbra
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — If you take Lo?Ovral-28 for birth control – check your pills.
Because of a packaging error, you may have received too many active pills or too many inactive pills. Drug maker Pfizer is recalling these, and the generic equivalent. The worry – the pills won’t work.
Because newer options are available, few women take this particular product these days, but one doctor’s basic message to those women is:
“Don’t worry,” says Dr. Eugene Scioscia, an obstetrician gynecologist at Allegheny Western Pennsylvania Hospital System.
In a standard four-week blister pack, you should have 21 active pills. These are typically all one color, and they contain a combination of hormones to keep the ovaries from releasing an egg. There should also be seven inactive pills. These are typically another color, and the week you take these pills is the week you get your period.
In the case of too many inactive pills, not having the hormones may result in ovulation. And if you have sex around that time, you could become pregnant.
“It’s still probably less than one percent,” says Dr. Scioscia about the likelihood, “but it’s measurable. S, we’re obligated to tell patients that, that they’re at some risk.”
With too many active pills, you may not have your period, but you won’t get pregnant.
It would be hard to trace a pregnancy to one of these packs, since completely correct usage, even with solid medication, can’t be assumed.
“Perfect pill users will conceive less than one percent of the time. But in reality in real time use, it’s eight percent,” says Dr. Scioscia.
If you have one of the faulty packs, let your doctor know and return it to the pharmacy. Any bad outcomes can be reported to the FDA with an online form, which can also be downloaded and mailed.