Thread: Best Birth Control Pill for PCOS
03-26-2013, 12:08 PM #1
Best Birth Control Pill for PCOS
Hi all, having had PCOS for five years it feels like I've just made a breakthrough after reading Hormonal Balance by Scott Isaacs. I'm one of those people who are always reading and trying to find and answer and when I find something that works, I like to share it with the world The book explains everything about PCOS and insulin resistance, your hormones, which birth control to take. My BC was making me tired and gain weight so I showed the doctor his book and she changed me to Yaz - I have already lost 3 pounds in 3 days! (probably water weight but after losing only 2 pounds after 2 weeks on Atkins I'll take anything)
What I found most interesting is the following:
"Birth control pills contain synthetic progesterone, called progestin. Progestin is not exactly like progesterone, because it acts like both progesterone and an androgen. progestins have more androgenic activity than natural progesterone. Because women with PCOS already have high androgens (which causes weight gain and insulin resistance), I recommend using birth control pills that have the least androgenic progestins, drospirenone, desogestrel or norgestimate. Avoid the progestins levonorgestrel, norgestrel, and norethindrone, which have the most androgenic activity."
Oh and Depo Provera, which I was on, is the WORST idea, as it stimulates male androgens and increases weight and insulin resistance and leads to dark facial hair
He also says that Yaz and Yasmin contains drospirenone that blocks some of the effects of androgens. Drospirenone is similar to spironolactone which blocks testosterone action. It is also a mild duiretic which means less bloating!
Hope this helps for those of you looking for more information or hunting for the right pill. Wikipedia has a handy list of all of them here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oral_co...e_formulations where you can look up which one has what in it and how much.
Don't give up until you find the right pill for you. I literally feel like a new woman and if this feeling of well-being persists I am considering going off my anti-depressant. Our hormones have such a big effect on our whole bodies and mind that its not worth 'sticking' with something just because its the devil you know.
Good luck to all of you.
03-26-2013, 08:52 PM #2
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Just be sure to talk with your doctor before up and quiting the anti-depressants. They will probably suggest a taper off plan instead a cold turkey approach, and that is gonna be the safest option.
03-26-2013, 09:07 PM #3
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The best BC for any person is the one that works for them. Everyone responds to different pills differently. If you don't like the one you're on, ask about trying something else. Not everyone with PCOS needs the extra anti-androgen medicine in Yaz, for many people just being on a combination pill of any kind is enough to keep testosterone low.Emily (36) & DH Kevin (37), married 10/24/10
9/22/12 ECTOPIC pregnancy
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03-27-2013, 05:46 AM #4
Yes, thanks, Smidjy, I'm quite versed with antidepressants by now so I won't do anything rash I'm on Celexa and not sure it ever really helped.
PetiteFlower, I agree that everyone is different and that Yaz/Yasmin is not for everyone. I do however think that the Endocronologist who wrote the book is probably right in that women with PCOS will do better with pill that has the least androgenic progestins like drospirenone, desogestrel or norgestimate. This is only for those women who are unhappy with what they are on or who are looking to start something new, and the options are quite varied.
04-03-2013, 12:35 AM #5
i take generess fe and it has been great for me
04-03-2013, 02:45 PM #6
I was on cilest (35mcg ethinylestradiol and 250mcg norgestimate) and have been on for four years. I know progesterone is good for you but the doctor has told me to try a new third generation pill. That has a significantly less amount of synthetic progesterone which i was initially worried about, but after reading this i'm starting to wonder whether such a high dose of norgestimate has made the problem worse in me? As it did not stop excessive hair growth at all.
04-04-2013, 08:46 AM #7
Hi pinksunset, Norgestimate is actually on the OK list for not being androgenic and cilest also contains a high amount of estrogent 35mg. The only two doses of Norgestimate I can see that is used is 180mg and 250mg. I'm not a doctor but I would say if that hasn't worked adding Spiro or switching to Yaz that has anti androgenic properties will help you with the hair growth.
As for the third generation pill, the book I referred to above mentions a new pill called Natazia:
"Natazia is the first birth control pill to contain natural estradiol instead of synthetic estrogen. The thought is that the natural estrogen will have fewer side effects, but no definite proof exists. Natazia also has a new progestin known as dienogest. Dienogest has an androgen blocking effect similar to drospirenone (like what is in Yaz/Yazmin) but claims to have fewer side effects."
I added the bits in brackets. The reason I'm not willing to change yet is because I'm happy with what I have and because Natazia is still new which means there isn't a lot of peer reviews to go on. I also suspect it is still very expensive. It is called Qlaira in the UK and costs about £20 a month as apposed to £13 for Yaz. If it indeed also has the same powers has drospirenone but without the bad side effects, I'd be happy to switch in a year's time when enough people have tried it and the price has gone down.
According to Wikipedia the pills are however split into FOUR and I dont even do well with triphasic ones. They contain:
estradiol valerate/dienogest combination with 2 tablets 3 mg/0 mg, followed by 5 tablets 2 mg/2 mg, 17 tablets 2 mg/3 mg, 2 tablets 1 mg/0 mg, and 2 placebos. (US: Natazia, Bayer; EU: Qlaira, Bayer Schering)
04-04-2013, 08:59 PM #8
I have been on a few BC since i was diagnosed with PCOS, the one that helped the MOST for my symptoms was the Yaz/Yasmin. everyone is very different just sharing my own experience. i saw a decrease in facial hair growth, acne was gone, no cramping during cycles, and weight gain was not drastic like it has been on other BC's ive taken! Love yaz/yasmin..hate the price if you dont have insurance though lol
04-04-2013, 09:40 PM #9
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I was on Diane-35, which is anti-androgenic and loved it. I don't buy into all the fear-mongering about it in the news lately. I also tried Alesse at one point, which was the worst friggin' idea ever - found out later the progestin used in it is levonorgestrel, which ahs the highest androgenic activity out of all the synthetic progestins. DizzyBee, I haven't read that book but I completely agree with the author's recommendations around progestins and PCOS.Me (33) Hidden Content DH (36) Married April 2011
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04-04-2013, 09:56 PM #10
I swear by lo ovral, anything low and has just one ingredient (estrogen/progestrone, etc) works wonders for me
diagnosed in 01 & 06
getting back on the Metformin train
goal: try paleo diet & get to optimal weight of 200lbs, currently 270
04-05-2013, 07:25 PM #11
04-08-2013, 06:08 AM #12
It makes sense that a singular pill would have fewer side effects but there arent that many of them. I need the estrogen in Yaz as well as the progestin that acts as a testosterone blocker because I can't take high dose estrogen pills. For instance, Diane-35 is very good but it makes me nauseous because of the high levels of estrogen. In fact even the 20 µg ethinyl estradiol in Yaz is making me nauseous but I'm sticking it out.
04-15-2013, 01:11 AM #13
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I'm quite happy on the ring - which doesn't have ANY of the progestins you mentioned. *lol*
NuvaRing delivers 120 µg of etonogestrel (a progestin) and 15 µg of ethinyl estradiol (an estrogen) each day of use.
Tried Diane, made me neurotic. Tried Alesse, Marvelon, both too finicky. Tried Ortho-Tricyclen, gained 50 lbs. Lost ten pounds the first month on the ring. I'm happy with it, and it's a no-hassle solution that doesn't have the side effects of Depo.
To each their own though. (But don't stop the Celexa without medical supervision. Backlash is not a fun game.)
=Betty="I reject your reality and substitute my own." Adam Savage
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04-22-2013, 09:02 AM #14
I've heard quite a few good thing about NuvaRing and have thought about contacting the author of the book, Scott Isaacs, to ask him what effect etonogestrel has on PCOS. I will report back if I hear from him. I really wan't to stay on Yaz but if the nausea persists I may have to consider this. I'm just worried it may feel like there's something 'in there' all the time and I may be worried that it will 'fall out' all the time LOL.
04-23-2013, 12:23 AM #15
I loved Yaz, LOVED IT, BUT, after a couple of years it very sadly stopped working for me. It'll probably go down as my favorite bcp I was ever on. Right now I am on Reclipsen (Desogen) and it seems to be working just fine I guess