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Cerazette is a hormonal contraceptive which is a pat of the progestogen only pill (commonly known as the mini pill). So there for warned you all at the beginning that this WILL mention periods, mucus membranes, vaginitis and more so can’t say I didn’t tell ya!!
** How it works?**
The active ingredient of Cerazette is desogestrel which is a synthetic progestogen that is very similar to the natural progestogen that the body produces.
The desogestrel acts in three ways, primarily by preventing the release of an egg from the ovary. It also acts by increasing the thickness of the mucus at the neck of the womb, by doing this it makes it harder for the sperm to cross from the vagina into the womb. Also as an added measure it changes the quality of the womb lining so if the previous two has failed than this will prevent the implantation of a fertilised egg onto the wall of the womb.
** Who it is prescribed for **
Cerazette being a mini pill is generally prescribed for those women that can not tolerate oestrogen based contraceptives. It is said to be suitable for older women, heavy smokers, women that suffer from hypertension (high blood pressure), valvular heart disease, diabetes mellitus and those that suffer from migraines. It is also commonly prescribed for women that have menstrual irregularities.
I was prescribed Cerazette as im unable to take the combined pill due to the fact that I have suffered from regular migraines since the age of three. Plus the fact that I did smoke not a heavy smoker thought – honest!!
** Who should avoid **
It is advised that caution should be used in those women that have a history of thrombosis. Also medical staff should be cautious when prescribing to women that have a past medical history of heart disease, sex steroid dependant cancer, past ectopic pregnancy and malabsorption syndrome.
The list goes on to say that Cerazette should be avoided in women that have functional ovarian cysts, active liver disease, recurrent cholestatic jaundice, undiagnosed vaginal bleeding, severe arterial disease, liver adenoma, Porphyria, any history of breast cancer. Also you should not be taking Cerazette if you have a history of venous thrombroemolism (due to the increase risk of DVT’s when on Cerazette). Obviously you should not be taking Cerazette is you are allergic to any of the ingredients.
As I do not fall into any of those categories I could safely start taking Cerazette.
Pictures of Cerazette Contraceptive Pill
do it safely
and Breast-feeding **
If you are taking Cerazette and you decide that you want to become pregnant you must inform your doctor that you are stopping this medication. Also if you become pregnant while taking Cerazette then you must stop taking it immediately.
Small amounts of Cerazette are passed though into the breast milk, however there are no indications that it contains any risk to a nursing baby. Although it is advised that if you are Cerazette and breast feeding you should observe the growth and development of the baby, (though obviously you’d be doing that anyway!!)
** Side effects **
As with all drugs there is a huge list of possible side effects ranging from common and minor to severe ones.
So to name them, headaches, dizziness, changes in mood, nausea, fatigue, weight gain, irregular menstrual cycle, can breast pain, development of fluid filled sacks (cysts) in the ovaries, amenorrhoea (stopping of menstrual periods).
Did you think it stopped there oh no, there’s more alopecia (hair loss) decreased sex drive, itchy rashes, vaginitis (inflammation of the lining of the vagina). Also there may be pain when menstruating, and depression- but the one that I found slightly unusual is that Cerazette can cause discomfort when wearing contact lenses.
So if you have any side effects that you think is due to the Cerazette then seek help from your GP.
Personal I have a high tolerance to most medications and never really have any side effects. So when reading a list like that it never put me off (though I can see why it would put people off). However in saying that I stopped taking Cerazette after 2 months because my headaches began to get worse and I started feeling dizzy and nauseous quite often. These I contributed to the Cerazette and after I stopped taking it the symptoms also stopped so therefore the Cerazette was not the contraceptive for me.
** Breast Cancer **
Also to note due to recent worries regarding women that take the pill and the associated risk of breast cancer I thought I should add the published statement;
“There is a small increase in the risk of having breast cancer diagnosed in women using, or who have recently used, a progestogen – only contraceptive pill; this relative risk may be due to an earlier diagnosis. The most important risk factor appears to be the age at which the contraceptive is stopped rather than the duration of use; the risk disappears gradually during the 10 years after stopping and there is no excess risk by 10 years. The CSM has advised that a possible small increase in the risk of breast cancer should be weighed against the benefits.”
This should be something that you discuss with either your practice nurse of your GP, and then make a decision. Obviously I decided that personally I was going to take the Cerazette despite the possible risk. Though anyone that chooses to take any mini pill should regularly examine themselves.
** Starting routine **
You start by taking one tablet daily on a continuous basis, starting on day one of your cycle and taking at the same time each day.
Most mini pills only give you a 2-3 hour window before it’s classed as a missed pill however Cerazette gives you a 12 hour window, which is great if you’re like me and keep forgetting to take the pill on time.
Additional contraceptive methods such as a condom should be used for the first 7 days when starting to take Cerazette.
** Missed pill **
The family planning organisation advice that if you have missed that 12 hour window then you are not protected. Therefore they suggest that you continue normal pill taking, but use another method (i.e., condoms) for the next two days. However others recommend the use of another method for seven days.
So that’s up to you really as to whether you are going to use another method for 2 or 7 days. Given that Cerazette has a 12 hour window I never had this problem as I didn’t miss a pill (most unlike me).
** Interactions **
Really this is one that people should know to so they know what does and doesn’t stop the effectiveness of Cerazette.
The effectiveness of Cerazette is NOT effected by broad spectrum anti biotics.
There are medications that MAY reduce the blood levels of Cerazette, making it less effective at preventing pregnancy. So these drugs are Anti-epileptic medication, barbiturates, ritonauir, griseofulvin, St John’s Wort, rifampicin and rifabutin.
So although your doctor may prescribe one of these to you while you’re taking Cerazette, your GP should also warn you that you need to take extra contraceptive methods.
** Warnings **
Surgery, when you are being booked into for elective surgery especially an operation to your legs or one that will require long periods of immobility post operatively you should let a health care professional know that you are taking Cerazette as they may require you to stop taking it weeks before the operation. (This is due to the increased risk of DVT’s).
Diarrhoea and vomiting, vomiting up to three hours after taking an oral contraceptive or very severe diarrhoea can interfere with its absorption, therefore addition precautions should be used during and for 7 days after. (Which of course is good advice though please tell me WHO when they have D &V will want to have sex?)
All women taking hormonal contraceptives should have regular medical check ups.
Women that do become pregnant while taking Cerazette have a greater risk of having an eptopic pregnancy. (Therefore any increased or abnormal abdominal pain along with menstrual irregularities or no bleeding should be reported to you doctor.
Any women that suffer from chloasma (yellow – brown patches of colouring on the skin) should avoid prolonged exposure to sunlight as Cerazette can make the condition worse.
So there you have all the information about Cerazette, but you should if any questions then seek advice from your practice nurse, GP, or pharmacist.
You should take as the instructions on the box states (one a day).
Read the patient information leaflet enclosed in the packet.
Also remember that although Cerazette is a contraceptive pill and will (should) stop you getting pregnant please take note that it doesn’t stop any sexually transmitted infections / diseases.
As I have stated with in the review, I stopped taking Cerazette after two months because of the side effects. The side effects were not severe however feeling dizzy and nausea with a constant headache does make it difficult to carry on with your normal daily life. So therefore it obviously was not for me, but I didn’t become pregnant while taking them – so they were effective.
Also I personally know 5 other women taking Cerazette who has not suffered any side effects at all and they are happy with the Cerazette.
Cerazette is still one of the newest additions to the mini pill and is said to be more effective than the others and research has shown to be 98.3% effective.
Most people are aware that the combined pill “real pill” is more effective than all the mini pills and the added bonus the “real pill” will control your periods which puts people off the mini pill. So that and along with the numbers of women that get pregnant while taking the mini pill, however research has also shown that the primary reason for this is non compliance. Not on purpose mind it’s said to be because of the small window of time you have to take the pill, which is one of the reasons why Cerazette is so celebrated and effective as it’s the only mini pill that offers that 12 hours window.
i have been worried about my fertility long term by being on cerazette and so have been researching this, was very happy with it apart from that concern but since reading up have discovered that my itchy rashes, discomfort wearing contact lenses and decreased sex drive. think ill stop taking it!
elenio 20.04.2008 02:59
great review, im on this pill and suffer a few of those symptoms
petal99 07.08.2007 13:05
Ever so informative!! I use it as well but it makes me constantly bleed!! :-((