Home Health Contraception and hypertension: Which strategies are secure for you?

Contraception and hypertension: Which strategies are secure for you?


Three efficient types of contraception comprise the hormone estrogen: the contraception patch, mixed hormonal contraception capsules, and a vaginal ring. Medical doctors have sometimes advisable that ladies avoid birth control with estrogen if they’ve hypertension, which current US guidelines outline as 130 mm Hg systolic strain and 80 mm Hg diastolic strain, or increased. A latest clinical update in JAMA clarifies whether or not it’s secure for some girls with hypertension to make use of these types of contraception.

Why does blood strain matter when selecting contraception?

Contraception containing estrogen can enhance blood strain. When girls who’ve hypertension use these contraception strategies, they’ve an elevated threat of stroke and coronary heart assault in contrast with girls who should not have hypertension. Nonetheless, their precise probabilities of having a stroke or a coronary heart assault are still quite low.

When contemplating contraception choices, it’s essential to additionally weigh the potential dangers of an unintended being pregnant. A girl who has a historical past of hypertension earlier than she turns into pregnant is extra prone to expertise

  • preeclampsia, a being pregnant complication that may have an effect on liver and kidney operate and may even result in eclampsia, or seizures
  • diabetes throughout being pregnant
  • blood clots
  • coronary heart assault

She’s additionally at increased threat for issues with fetal progress and preterm beginning.

Why are suggestions round blood strain and contraception being up to date?

When US blood strain tips modified in 2017, many extra folks had been identified with hypertension. That occurred as a result of the brand new tips tightened requirements, as follows:

  • regular blood strain is lower than 120 (systolic)/80 (diastolic) mm Hg
  • elevated blood strain is between 120 and 129 mm Hg (systolic) and fewer than 80 mm Hg (diastolic)
  • hypertension is 130 mm Hg (systolic) and 80 mm Hg (diastolic) or increased.

With these up to date definitions, nearly half of American adults have hypertension. Black girls are at notably excessive threat: more than half of Black women over the age of 19 are identified with hypertension.

If a girl has hypertension, the JAMA replace recommends weighing three elements earlier than beginning an estrogen-containing contraception: a girl’s age, management of blood strain, and some other dangers for coronary heart illness.

  • Protected to make use of contraception containing estrogen: If girls are 35 years previous or youthful, have properly managed blood strain, and are wholesome, estrogen-containing contraception can be utilized. Be sure you have a well being skilled test blood strain inside one month of beginning such a contraception. Moreover, routine blood strain checks are advisable twice a 12 months.
  • Ought to keep away from contraception containing estrogen: If girls are older than 35, even when they’ve properly managed blood strain, estrogen-containing contraception ought to be prevented. Equally, girls of any age who’ve a number of threat elements for coronary heart illness or who’ve uncontrolled hypertension mustn’t use contraception containing estrogen. These girls additionally mustn’t use the birth control shot (Depo-Provera) as a result of it might enhance ldl cholesterol and result in an elevated threat of stroke, based on the evaluate. (This remedy accommodates a special hormone known as progestin.)

The JAMA replace reviewed proof primarily based on an older definition of high blood pressure within the context of contraception use. Additional analysis is required to higher perceive how totally different ranges of blood strain may have an effect on girls utilizing contraception that accommodates estrogen. Nonetheless, it’s unlikely that these suggestions would change additional primarily based on the newer definition of hypertension.

Which contraception strategies don’t comprise estrogen?

So, what can girls who’re unable to make use of contraception containing estrogen use to forestall being pregnant? The excellent news is that there are a selection of different contraception strategies out there, each hormonal and nonhormonal.

  • The most reliable forms of birth control with out estrogen are the copper intrauterine system (IUD), the hormonal IUD, the implant, and sterilization for girls or males.
  • Nonhormonal methods embrace the copper IUD, condoms for males or girls, cervical cap, and diaphragm.
  • Three progestin-only hormonal strategies are secure to make use of: the minipill, the birth control implant, or the hormonal IUD. Nonetheless, the contraception shot (Depo-Provera) isn’t advisable for girls who’ve poorly managed hypertension.

In case you do have hypertension, train and dietary modifications stay an essential part of sustaining your coronary heart well being. Talk about along with your physician which contraception choices is likely to be greatest for you, so that you simply and your physician can interact in shared decision-making about your preferences.

See the Harvard Health Birth Control Center for extra data on choices.

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