What is Ocella?
Ocella is a generic version of the Yasmin birth control pill that combines ethinyl estradiol and drospirenone. This oral contraceptive works by:
- preventing ovulation during a woman’s menstrual cycle
- making vaginal fluid thicker
- changing the lining of the uterus to prevent attachment of a fertilized egg
Ocella is made by Bayer AG, and was approved by the FDA in 2008.
Ocella and Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension
IIH occurs when pressure inside the skull (intracranial pressure) increases for no apparent reason. Symptoms are similar to those of a large brain tumor, except that no tumor exists. Idiopathic intracranial hypertension can occur in children and men, but it’s most often diagnosed in obese women of childbearing potential.
The exact cause of IIH in most patients is unknown; however, according to the National Institutes of Health, hormonal contraceptives may increase a user’s risk of developing the condition.
- Blurred vision
- Double vision (diplopia)
- Eye injury (papilledema)
- Buzzing sound in the ears (tinnitus)
- Vision loss
Along with using Ocella, these factors may increase your risk of developing IIH:
- Addison disease
- Chronic kidney failure
- Cushing’s disease
- Iron deficiency anemia
- Onset of menstruation (menarche)
Can Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension be Cured?
Some patients with IIH are able to recover without any vision problems. However, others may experience permanent vision loss, which can range from mild to severe. Unfortunately, there are no treatments available to reverse permanent injury to the optic nerves caused by idiopathic intracranial hypertension. Treatment of the injury is centered around stopping vision loss that has already occurred.