Medication has been evolving at an alarming pace due to the advancements of technology and our understanding of it. Prescription and over-the-counter medications are being more readily available than ever before. The availability and complexity of birth control pills in our time of age requires a certain understanding.
It has been brought to light that American women have been crossing the border into Mexico to buy birth control pills. Women are doing this because it is cheaper in Mexico but of course the risks in Mexico are greater. Also many women in the States are denied at the clinic because of a contraindication.
It’s not just Mexico. Many places all over the world have OTC birth control Much of South America also has OTC birth control available.
The results of the birth control studies have been somewhat contradictory. This confusion has lead to no affirmative stance and publication to be announced. Dr. Grossman’s team reported in the March issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology that woman from southern Texas were using combined oral contraceptives from a family planning clinics meaning prescription birth control pills had a lesser rate of absolute and relative contraindications (5.3% and 8.6%) than woman who were crossing into Mexico to buy them without a prescription (7.4% and 13.4%, respectively). However, another study done by Dr. Grossman and his colleagues show, “distributing more pill packs at once and removing the prescription requirement would lead to increased continuation”. A new study shows that “women who obtained their pills at the clinic were 60% more likely to stop taking them”. The reason is thought of as for the discontinuation of the pill is the issue of access. The danger is buying the pill OTC doesn’t inform women of the combined dangers. The conditions include “severe liver disease, breast cancer, ischemic heart disease, stroke or complex valvular heart disease, thrombogenic factors (e.g., major surgery with prolonged immobilization or history of thromboembolism), migraine with aura, smoking at age 35 or older, breastfeeding less than 6 weeks postpartum, and blood pressure of 160/100 or higher”.
The studies by Dr. Newcomer show that women can accurately use a checklist to spot the risks of birth control pills, and use an automatic blood pressure machine to check for hypertension. What OB-GYNs and general doctors need to do is ensure the safety of their patients by removing the barriers women face in getting birth control pills and educating them.
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