Contraceptive Pill Risks And Benefits

“What goes wrong if I take the pills?”

It is easier to summarise the contraceptive pill risks and benefits in a table:-

Risks and problems  Benefits
Break through bleeding Very good protection against pregnancy
Nausea Regulation of menstrual cycle
Breast tenderness Reduced menstrual flow and pain
Increased appetite Reduced premenstrual tension
Mood changes Increased breast size in small breasted women
Increased breast size in large breasted women Reduced severity of acne
Headaches Increased libido
Increased risk of thrombosis (15/100,000) Easily reversible contraception
Increased risk of stroke in migraine sufferers Menstrual periods can be skipped if desired
Very slightly increased risk of   breast cancer Halves the risk of ovarian cyst development
Increased risk of cervical cancer Halves the risk of pelvic inflammatory disease
Fails to work with vomiting and diarrhoea Reduced long-term incidence of infertility
Antibiotics reduce effectiveness Reduces excess facial and body hair
Reduced risk of ovarian cancer (-40%)
Dramatic long-term reduction in endometrial cancer (-60%)
Reduced incidence of endometriosis (-30%)
Reduced incidence of uterine fibroids (-20%)
Reduced mammary dysplasia (breast lumps)(-50%)

Overall women who take the contraceptive pill have longer lives, and are less likely to die from cancer or heart disease than women who have never used it.

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