Chateal EQ (Page 2 of 6)

3. Hypertension

Chateal EQ is contraindicated in females with uncontrolled hypertension or hypertension with vascular disease (see CONTRAINDICATIONS). For all females, including those with well-controlled hypertension, monitor blood pressure at routine visits and stop Chateal EQ if blood pressure rises significantly.

An increase in blood pressure has been reported in females using COCs, and this increase is more likely in older women with extended duration of use. The effect of COCs on blood pressure may vary according to the progestin in the COC.

4. Age-related Considerations

The risk for cardiovascular disease and prevalence of risk factors for cardiovascular disease increase with age. Certain conditions, such as smoking and migraine headache without aura, that do not contraindicate COC use in younger females, are contraindications to use in women over 35 years of age [see CONTRAINDICATIONS and WARNINGS (1) ]. Consider the presence of underlying risk factors that may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease or VTE, particularly before initiating a COC for women over 35 years, such as:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Dyslipidemia
  • Obesity

5. Risk of Liver Enzyme Elevations with Concomitant Hepatitis C Treatment

During clinical trials with the Hepatitis C combination drug regimen that contains ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir, with or without dasabuvir, ALT elevations greater than 5 times the upper limit of normal (ULN), including some cases greater than 20 times the ULN, were significantly more frequent in women using ethinyl estradiol-containing medications such as COCs. Discontinue Chateal EQ prior to starting therapy with the combination drug regimen ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir, with or without dasabuvir (see CONTRAINDICATIONS). Chateal EQ can be restarted approximately 2 weeks following completion of treatment with the combination drug regimen.

6. Gallbladder Disease

Studies suggest an increased risk of developing gallbladder disease among COC users. Use of COCs may also worsen existing gallbladder disease.

A past history of COC-related cholestasis predicts an increased risk with subsequent COC use. Females with a history of pregnancy-related cholestasis may be at an increased risk for COC-related cholestasis.

7. Adverse Carbohydrate and Lipid Metabolic Effects


Chateal EQ is contraindicated in diabetic women over age 35, or females who have diabetes with hypertension, nephropathy, retinopathy, neuropathy, other vascular disease, or females with diabetes of > 20 years duration (see CONTRAINDICATIONS). Chateal EQ may decrease glucose tolerance. Carefully monitor prediabetic and diabetic females who are using Chateal EQ.


Consider alternative contraception for females with uncontrolled dyslipidemia. Chateal EQ may cause adverse lipid changes.

Females with hypertriglyceridemia, or a family history thereof, may have an increase in serum triglyceride concentrations when using Chateal EQ, which may increase the risk of pancreatitis.

8. Headache

Chateal EQ is contraindicated in females who have headaches with focal neurological symptoms or have migraine headaches with aura, and in women over age 35 years who have migraine headaches with or without aura (see CONTRAINDICATIONS).

If a woman using Chateal EQ develops new headaches that are recurrent, persistent, or severe, evaluate the cause and discontinue Chateal EQ if indicated. Consider discontinuation of Chateal EQ if there is an increased frequency or severity of migraines during COC use (which may be prodromal of a cerebrovascular event).

9. Bleeding Irregularities and Amenorrhea

Unscheduled Bleeding and Spotting

Females using Chateal EQ may experience unscheduled (breakthrough or intracyclic) bleeding and spotting, especially during the first three months of use. Bleeding irregularities may resolve over time or by changing to a different contraceptive product. If bleeding persists or occurs after previously regular cycles, evaluate for causes such as pregnancy or malignancy.

In two clinical trials of Chateal EQ (1084 subjects reporting for a total of 8186 treatment cycles and 238 subjects reporting for a total of 1102 treatment cycles), breakthrough bleeding occurred in 6.9% and 8.1% of reported cycles, and spotting occurred in 8.6% and 7.9% of reported cycles over the total study duration, respectively. In the two trials, intermenstrual bleeding (i.e., breakthrough bleeding and/or spotting) occurred in 13.1% and 12.9% of reported cycles over the total study duration, respectively. In one trial, 33 subjects out of 1084 (3.0%) discontinued due to bleeding irregularities (i.e., breakthrough bleeding and spotting); in the other trial, 6 subjects out of 238 (2.5%) discontinued due to bleeding irregularities.

Amenorrhea and Oligomenorrhea

Females who use Chateal EQ may experience absence of scheduled (withdrawal) bleeding, even if they are not pregnant. In two clinical trials of Chateal EQ, one including 8186 reported treatment cycles, and the other including 1102 reported treatment cycles, amenorrhea occurred in 1.5% of treatment cycles in each trial.

If scheduled bleeding does not occur, consider the possibility of pregnancy. If the patient has not adhered to the prescribed dosing schedule (missed one or two active tablets or started taking them on a day later than she should have), consider the possibility of pregnancy at the time of the first missed period and perform appropriate diagnostic measures. If the patient has adhered to the prescribed dosing schedule and misses two consecutive periods, rule out pregnancy.

After discontinuation of a COC, amenorrhea or oligomenorrhea may occur, especially if these conditions were pre-existent.

10. Depression

Carefully observe females with a history of depression and discontinue Chateal EQ if depression recurs to a serious degree. Data on the association of COCs with onset of depression or exacerbation of existing depression are limited.

11. Cervical Cancer

Some studies suggest that COCs are associated with an increase in the risk of cervical cancer or intraepithelial neoplasia. There is controversy about the extent to which these findings are due to differences in sexual behavior and other factors.

12. Effect on Binding Globulins

The estrogen component of Chateal EQ may raise the serum concentrations of thyroxine-binding globulin, sex hormone-binding globulin, and cortisol-binding globulin. The dose of replacement thyroid hormone or cortisol therapy may need to be increased.

13. Hereditary Angioedema

In females with hereditary angioedema, exogenous estrogens may induce or exacerbate symptoms of angioedema.

14. Chloasma

Chloasma may occur with Chateal EQ use, especially in females with a history of chloasma gravidarum. Advise females with a history of chloasma to avoid exposure to the sun or ultraviolet radiation while using Chateal EQ.


1. Lipid Disorders

Women who are being treated for hyperlipidemias should be followed closely if they elect to use oral contraceptives. Some progestogens may elevate LDL levels and may render the control of hyperlipidemias more difficult [see WARNINGS (7)]. In patients with familial defects of lipoprotein metabolism receiving estrogen-containing preparations, there have been case reports of significant elevations of plasma triglycerides leading to pancreatitis.

2. Fluid Retention

Oral contraceptives may cause some degree of fluid retention. They should be prescribed with caution, and only with careful monitoring, in patients with conditions which might be aggravated by fluid retention.

3. Gastrointestinal Motility

Diarrhea and/or vomiting may reduce hormone absorption (see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION).

4. Drug Interactions

The sections below provide information on substances for which data on drug interactions with COCs are available. There is little information available about the clinical effect of most drug interactions that may affect COCs. However, based on the known pharmacokinetic effects of these drugs, clinical strategies to minimize any potential adverse effect on contraceptive effectiveness or safety are suggested.

Consult the approved product labeling of all concurrently used drugs to obtain further information about interactions with COCs or the potential for metabolic enzyme or transporter system alterations.

No drug-drug interaction studies were conducted with Chateal EQ.

4.1 Effects of Other Drugs on Combined Oral Contraceptives

Substances Decreasing the Plasma Concentrations of COCs and Potentially Diminishing the Efficacy of COCs:

Table 1 includes substances that demonstrated an important drug interaction with Chateal EQ.

Table 1: Significant Drug Interactions Involving Substances That Affect COCs

Metabolic Enzyme Inducers
Clinical effect
  • Concomitant use of COCs with metabolic enzyme inducers may decrease the plasma concentrations of the estrogen and/or progestin component of COCs.
  • Decreased exposure of the estrogen and/or progestin component of COCs may potentially diminish the effectiveness of COCs and may lead to contraceptive failure or an increase in breakthrough bleeding.
Prevention or management
  • Counsel females to use an alternative method of contraception or a backup method when enzyme inducers are used with COCs.
  • Continue backup contraception for 28 days after discontinuing the enzyme inducer to maintain contraceptive reliability.
Examples Aprepitant, barbiturates, bosentan, carbamazepine, efavirenz, felbamate, griseofulvin, oxcarbazepine, phenytoin, rifampin, rifabutin, rufinamide, topiramate, products containing St. John’s worta , and certain protease inhibitors (see separate section on protease inhibitors below).
Clinical effect
  • Concomitant use of COCs with colesevelam significantly decreases systemic exposure of ethinyl estradiol.
  • Decreased exposure of the estrogen component of COCs may potentially reduce contraceptive efficacy or result in an increase in breakthrough bleeding, depending on the strength of ethinyl estradiol in the COC.
Prevention or management Administer 4 or more hours apart to attenuate this drug interaction.

a Induction potency of St. John’s wort may vary widely based on preparation.

Substances increasing the systemic exposure of COCs:

Co-administration of atorvastatin or rosuvastatin and COCs containing ethinyl estradiol increase systemic exposure of ethinyl estradiol by approximately 20 to 25 percent. Ascorbic acid and acetaminophen may increase systemic exposure of ethinyl estradiol, possibly by inhibition of conjugation. CYP3A inhibitors such as itraconazole, voriconazole, fluconazole, grapefruit juice,7 or ketoconazole may increase systemic exposure of the estrogen and/or progestin component of COCs.

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/hepatitis C virus (HCV) protease inhibitors and non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors:

Significant decreases in systemic exposure of the estrogen and/or progestin have been noted when COCs are co-administered with some HIV protease inhibitors (e.g., nelfinavir, ritonavir, darunavir/ritonavir, (fos)amprenavir/ritonavir, lopinavir/ritonavir, and tipranavir/ritonavir), some HCV protease inhibitors (e.g., boceprevir and telaprevir), and some non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (e.g., nevirapine).

In contrast, significant increases in systemic exposure of the estrogen and/or progestin have been noted when COCs are co-administered with certain other HIV protease inhibitors (e.g., indinavir and atazanavir/ritonavir) and with other non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (e.g., etravirine).

4.2 Effects of Combined Oral Contraceptives on Other Drugs

Table 2 provides significant drug interaction information for drugs co-administered with Chateal EQ.

Table 2: Significant Drug Interaction Information for Drugs Co-Administered With COCs

Clinical effect
  • Concomitant use of COCs with lamotrigine may significantly decrease systemic exposure of lamotrigine due to induction of lamotrigine glucuronidation.
  • Decreased systemic exposure of lamotrigine may reduce seizure control.
Prevention or management Dose adjustment may be necessary. Consult the approved product labeling for lamotrigine.
Thyroid Hormone Replacement Therapy or Corticosteroid Replacement Therapy
Clinical effect Concomitant use of COCs with thyroid hormone replacement therapy or corticosteroid replacement therapy may increase systemic exposure of thyroid-binding and cortisol-binding globulin (see Warnings, EFFECT ON BINDING GLOBULINS).
Prevention or management The dose of replacement thyroid hormone or cortisol therapy may need to be increased. Consult the approved product labeling for the therapy in use (see Warnings, EFFECT ON BINDING GLOBULINS).
Other Drugs
Clinical effect Concomitant use of COCs may decrease systemic exposure of acetaminophen, morphine, salicylic acid, and temazepam. Concomitant use with ethinyl estradiol-containing COCs may increase systemic exposure of other drugs (e.g., cyclosporine, prednisolone, theophylline, tizanidine, and voriconazole).
Prevention or management The dosage of drugs that can be affected by this interaction may need to be increased. Consult the approved product labeling for the concomitantly used drug.

4.3 Effect on Laboratory Tests

The use of COCs may influence the results of certain laboratory tests, such as coagulation factors, lipids, glucose tolerance, and binding proteins.

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