ITEMS IN AFP WITH MESH TERM:
ABSTRACT: Millions of women in the United States use some type of hormonal contraception: combination oral contraceptive pills (OCPs), progestin-only pills, medroxyprogesterone acetate injections, or subdermal levonorgestrel implants. Abnormal uterine bleeding is a common but rarely dangerous side effect of hormonal contraception. It is, however, a major cause for the discontinuation of hormonal contraception and the resultant occurrence of unplanned pregnancy. The evaluation of abnormal uterine bleeding in women who are using hormonal contraception includes an assessment of compliance, a thorough history and complete physical examination to exclude organic causes of bleeding, and a targeted laboratory evaluation. Pregnancy and the misuse of OCPs are frequent causes of abnormal uterine bleeding. Bleeding is common during the first three months of OCP use; counseling and reassurance are adequate during this time period. If bleeding persists beyond three months, it can be treated with supplemental estrogen and/or a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Other options are to change to an OCP with a higher estrogen content or to a different formulation (i.e., a low-dose OCP containing a different progestin). Management strategies for women with abnormal uterine bleeding who are using progestin-only contraceptive methods include counseling and reassurance, as well as the administration of supplemental estrogen and/or an NSAID during bleeding episodes.
Treatment of Menorrhagia - Article
ABSTRACT: Menorrhagia is defined as excessive uterine bleeding occurring at regular intervals or prolonged uterine bleeding lasting more than seven days. The classic definition of menorrhagia (i.e., greater than 80 mL of blood loss per cycle) is rarely used clinically. Women describe the loss or reduction of daily activities as more important than the actual volume of bleeding. Routine testing of all women with menorrhagia for inherited coagulation disorders is unnecessary. Saline infusion sonohysteroscopy detects intracavitary abnormalities such as endometrial polyps or uterine leiomyoma and is less expensive and invasive than hysteroscopy. Endometrial biopsy is effective for diagnosing precancerous lesions and adenocarcinoma but not for intracavitary lesions. Except for continuous progestin, medical therapies are limited. The levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device is an effective therapy for women who want to preserve fertility and avoid surgery. Surgical therapies include endometrial ablation methods that preserve the uterus; and hysterectomy, which results in high satisfaction rates but with potential surgical morbidity. Overall, hysterectomy and endometrial ablation result in the greatest satisfaction rates if future childbearing is not desired. Treatment of menorrhagia results in substantial improvement in quality of life.
Using Progestins in Clinical Practice - Article
ABSTRACT: Progestational agents have many important functions, including regulation of the menstrual cycle, treatment of dysfunctional uterine bleeding, prevention of endometrial cancer and hyperplastic precursor lesions, and contraception. Because of the reported side effects of synthetic analogs called "progestins," there has been interest in replicating the natural hormone for clinical use. Natural progesterone is obtained primarily from plant sources and is currently available in injectable, intravaginal and oral formulations. An oral micronized progesterone preparation has improved bioavailability and fewer reported side effects compared with synthetic progestins. Adolescents and perimenopausal women may require progestational agents for the treatment of dysfunctional uterine bleeding resulting from anovulatory cycles. These agents may also be used in women at risk for endometrial hyperplasia because of chronic unopposed estrogen stimulation. Progestin-only contraceptives can be used in women with contraindications to estrogen; however, efficacy requires rigorous compliance. New progestins for use in combination oral contraceptive pills were specifically developed to reduce androgenic symptoms. It is unclear whether these progestins increase the risk of venous thromboembolic disease. Progestin-only emergency contraception offers a regimen that is more effective than combination oral contraceptive pills, with fewer reported side effects.
Informed Consent and Emergency Contraception - Editorials
ABSTRACT: Unintended pregnancy can occur when women stop one birth control method before starting another. To prevent gaps in contraception, physicians should ask women regularly about adverse effects, cost, difficulty remembering the next dose, and other issues that affect adherence. Women who want to change contraceptive methods need accurate advice about how to do so. Some contraception transitions require an overlap between the old method and the new method. To switch safely from one contraceptive to another without overlap, women may go directly from the old method to the new method, abstaining from sexual intercourse or using a barrier method, such as condoms or spermicide, for the first seven days.
Progestin-Only Contraceptives: Effects on Weight - Cochrane for Clinicians