Hormone-based contraceptives have been associated with a severe neurological disorder called benign intracranial hypertension (BIH). This condition occurs when pressure around the brain builds up, resulting in chronic headaches, ringing in the ears (tinnitus), nausea, dizziness and visual disturbances.
What is Yasmin?
Yasmin is a birth control pill that combines an estrogen and progesterone component. The drug protects against pregnancy by:
- Blocking the release of an egg (ovulation)
- Thickening the cervical mucus, making it difficult for sperm to reach the uterus
- Preventing a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus
What is Benign Intracranial Hypertension?
BIH is a condition that occurs when pressure around the brain (intracranial pressure) increases suddenly, causing migraine headaches and visual disturbances. These symptoms are similar to those of a large brain tumor, which often leads to a misdiagnosis of the condition.
Although it is unclear what causes benign intracranial hypertension, studies have found that certain hormonal birth control products may increase the risk of the disorder. Levonorgestrel, a synthetic hormone contained in the Mirena intrauterine device (IUD) and other contraceptives, was linked to BIH in 1995.
- Blurred vision
- Double vision (diplopia)
- Eye injury (papilledema)
- Buzzing sound in the ears (tinnitus)
- Vision loss
Side Effects of Yasmin
Yasmin has been linked to the following serious side effects:
- Heart Attack
- Cardiac Arrhythmia
- Pulmonary embolism (an artery in the lung is blocked)
- Blood Clots (Non-Vaginal)
- Kidney Failure
- Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
- Gallbladder Disease
- Hepatic Adenomas
- Sudden Death