Extensive epidemiological studies have revealed no increased risk of birth defects in women who have used oral contraceptives prior to pregnancy. Studies also do not suggest a teratogenic effect, particularly in so far as cardiac anomalies and limb-reduction defects are concerned, when taken inadvertently during early pregnancy.
The administration of oral contraceptives to induce withdrawal bleeding should not be used as a test for pregnancy [see Use in Specific Populations (8.1)].
Women with a history of depression should be carefully observed and Yaz discontinued if depression recurs to a serious degree.
The use of COCs may change the results of some laboratory tests, such as coagulation factors, lipids, glucose tolerance, and binding proteins. Women on thyroid hormone replacement therapy may need increased doses of thyroid hormone because serum concentrations of thyroid-binding globulin increase with use of COCs. DRSP causes an increase in plasma renin activity and plasma aldosterone induced by its mild antimineralocorticoid activity.
A woman who is taking COCs should have a yearly visit with her healthcare provider for a blood pressure check and for other indicated healthcare.
In women with hereditary angioedema, exogenous estrogens may induce or exacerbate symptoms of angioedema. Chloasma may occasionally occur, especially in women with a history of chloasma gravidarum. Women with a tendency to chloasma should avoid exposure to the sun or ultraviolet radiation while taking COCs.
The following serious adverse reactions with the use of COCs are discussed elsewhere in the labeling:
- Serious cardiovascular events and smoking [see Boxed Warning and Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]
- Vascular events [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]
- Liver disease [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]
Adverse reactions commonly reported by COC users are:
- Irregular uterine bleeding
- Breast tenderness
Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in clinical practice.
Contraception and Acne Clinical Trials
The data provided reflect the experience with the use of Yaz in the adequate and well-controlled studies for contraception (N=1,056) and for moderate acne vulgaris (N=536).
For contraception, a Phase 3, multicenter, multinational, open-label study was conducted to evaluate safety and efficacy up to one year in 1,027 women aged 17 – 36 who took at least one dose of Yaz. A second Phase 3 study was a single center, open-label, active-controlled study to evaluate the effect of 7 28-day cycles of Yaz on carbohydrate metabolism, lipids and hemostasis in 29 women aged 18–35. For acne, two multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled studies, in 536 women aged 14–45 with moderate acne vulgaris who took at least one dose of Yaz, evaluated the safety and efficacy during up to 6 cycles.
The adverse reactions seen across the 2 indications overlapped, and are reported using the frequencies from the pooled dataset. The most common adverse reactions (≥ 2% of users) were: headache/migraine (6.7%), menstrual irregularities (including vaginal hemorrhage [primarily spotting] and metrorrhagia (4.7%), nausea/vomiting (4.2%), breast pain/tenderness (4%) and mood changes (mood swings, depression, depressed mood and affect lability) (2.2%).
PMDD Clinical Trials
Safety data from trials for the indication of PMDD are reported separately due to differences in study design and setting in the Contraception and Acne studies as compared to the PMDD clinical program.
Two (one parallel and one crossover designed) multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trials for the secondary indication of treating the symptoms of PMDD evaluated safety and efficacy of Yaz during up to 3 cycles among 285 women aged 18–42, diagnosed with PMDD and who took at least one dose of Yaz.
Common adverse reactions (≥ 2% of users) were: menstrual irregularities (including vaginal hemorrhage [primarily spotting] and metrorrhagia) (24.9%), nausea (15.8%), headache (13%), breast tenderness (10.5%), fatigue (4.2%), irritability (2.8%), decreased libido (2.8%), increased weight (2.5%), and affect lability (2.1%).
Adverse Reactions (≥1%) Leading to Study Discontinuation:
Contraception Clinical Trials
Of 1,056 women, 6.6% discontinued from the clinical trials due to an adverse reaction; the most frequent adverse reactions leading to discontinuation were headache/migraine (1.6%) and nausea/vomiting (1%).
Acne Clinical Trials
Of 536 women, 5.4% discontinued from the clinical trials due to an adverse reaction; the most frequent adverse reaction leading to discontinuation was menstrual irregularities (including menometrorrhagia, menorrhagia, metrorrhagia and vaginal hemorrhage) (2.2%) .
PMDD Clinical Trials
Of 285 women, 11.6% discontinued from the clinical trials due to an adverse reaction; the most frequent adverse reactions leading to discontinuation were: nausea/vomiting (4.6%), menstrual irregularity (including vaginal hemorrhage, menorrhagia, menstrual disorder, menstruation irregular and metrorrhagia) (4.2%), fatigue (1.8%), breast tenderness (1.4%), depression (1.4%), headache (1.1%), and irritability (1.1%).
Serious Adverse Reactions:
Contraception Clinical Trials: migraine and cervical dysplasia
Acne Clinical Trials: none reported in the clinical trials
PMDD Clinical Trials: cervical dysplasia
The following adverse reactions have been identified during post approval use of Yaz. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.
Adverse reactions are grouped into System Organ Classes, and ordered by frequency.
Vascular disorders: Venous and arterial thromboembolic events (including pulmonary emboli, deep vein thrombosis, cerebral thrombosis, retinal thrombosis, myocardial infarction and stroke), hypertension (including hypertensive crisis)
Hepatobiliary disorders: Gallbladder disease, liver function disturbances, liver tumors
Immune system disorders: Hypersensitivity (including anaphylactic reaction)
Metabolism and nutrition disorders: Hyperkalemia, hypertriglyceridemia, changes in glucose tolerance or effect on peripheral insulin resistance (including diabetes mellitus)
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders: Chloasma, angioedema, erythema nodosum, erythema multiforme
Gastrointestinal disorders: Inflammatory bowel disease
Musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders: Systemic lupus erythematosus
Consult the labeling of all concurrently-used drugs to obtain further information about interactions with hormonal contraceptives or the potential for enzyme alterations.
Substances diminishing the efficacy of COCs: Drugs or herbal products that induce certain enzymes, including CYP3A4, may decrease the effectiveness of COCs or increase breakthrough bleeding. Some drugs or herbal products that may decrease the effectiveness of hormonal contraceptives include phenytoin, barbiturates, carbamazepine, bosentan, felbamate, griseofulvin, oxcarbazepine, rifampicin, topiramate and products containing St. John’s wort. Interactions between oral contraceptives and other drugs may lead to breakthrough bleeding and/or contraceptive failure. Counsel women to use an alternative method of contraception or a back-up method when enzyme inducers are used with COCs, and to continue back-up contraception for 28 days after discontinuing the enzyme inducer to ensure contraceptive reliability.
Substances increasing the plasma levels of COCs: Co-administration of atorvastatin and certain COCs containing EE increase AUC values for EE by approximately 20%. Ascorbic acid and acetaminophen may increase plasma EE levels, possibly by inhibition of conjugation. CYP3A4 inhibitors such as itraconazole or ketoconazole may increase plasma hormone levels.
HIV protease inhibitors and non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors : Significant changes (increase and decrease) in plasma levels of estrogen and progestin have been noted in some cases of co-administration with HIV protease inhibitors or with non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors.
Antibiotics: There have been reports of pregnancy while taking hormonal contraceptives and antibiotics, but clinical pharmacokinetic studies have not shown consistent effects of antibiotics on plasma concentrations of synthetic steroids.
Effect on DRSP: The main metabolites of DRSP in human plasma are generated without involvement of the cytochrome P450 system. Inhibitors of this enzyme system are therefore unlikely to influence the metabolism of DRSP.
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