In detail

Do contraceptives attack the liver or not?

Do contraceptives attack the liver or not?

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Contraceptives are, in fact, synthetic hormones with contraceptive role, namely a combination of estrogen and progestin or in some cases only progestin. Often these hormones are not eliminated, but are stored over time in the body.

The combination of estrogen and progestin prevents pregnancy through its inhibitory effect on the secretion of LH (luteinizing hormone) and FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone), produced by the pituitary gland in the brain. These two hormones, LH and FSH, play a key role in egg development and endometrial preparation for embryo implantation.

Estrogen inhibits the metabolism (elimination) of cyclosporins (immunosuppressants), resulting in increased cyclosporine in the blood. If the level of cyclosporine in the blood is high, liver or kidney problems may occur.

It seems that estrogen may increase the risk of liver disease through a mechanism still unknown in patients receiving dantrolene. Women over 35 with liver problems are particularly at risk.

Estrogen increases the synthesis of coagulation factors produced by the liver. Because of this, people taking warfarin (anticoagulant) should be monitored.

Progestin (synthetic progesterone) has the role of thickening the mucous membrane of the egg, so the sperm will be harder to penetrate, thus decreasing the possibility of fertilization taking place. In some women, progestin inhibits ovulation (expulsion of the egg).

When you swallow the pill, it will reach the stomach, where it will dissolve, and its contents will reach the bloodstream. The main route that the content of the pill (hormones) will take is portal blood, more precisely it is the blood that reaches the liver. In some cases, many substances cannot be processed by the liver and become stored at its level.

Fortunately, the liver is an organ that has the capacity to regenerate, only if 25% of it functions normally. However, long-term medicines can irreversibly affect the liver.

How do contraceptives work?

Contraceptives or hormones play a role in resting the ovary, acting as if the woman is pregnant. For as long as it takes contraceptives, the body will behave as such.

Normally contraceptives are prescribed for the prevention of pregnancy, but are also prescribed for women with menstrual problems. They regulate the menstrual cycle, reduce menstrual cramps and massive bleeding.

The most common adverse effects are: nausea, headache, breast pain, irregular bleeding and mood swings.

Blood and endocrinological tests are very important, so it is recommended that before you decide to take birth control consult a doctor. Women using contraceptives should also take hepatoprotective drugs, but not without the doctor's consent.

Laura Moise

Contraceptive Tags Contraceptive Side Effects Contraceptive risks