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Loestrin 24 Fe oral

Important Note

Warnings
Uses
Side Effects
Precautions
Interactions
Overdose
Loestrin 24 Fe oral Warnings

Do not use this medication if you smoke cigarettes/use tobacco and are over 35 years old. Smoking raises your risk of stroke, heart attack, blood clots, and high blood pressure from hormonal birth control (such as the pill, patch, ring). The risk of these serious problems increases with age and with the number of cigarettes you smoke. Do not smoke or use tobacco.

Accidental overdose of iron-containing products is a leading cause of fatal poisoning in children under 6 years of age. Keep this product out of reach of children. If overdose occurs, get medical help right away or call a poison control center.

Loestrin 24 Fe oral Uses

This medication is a combination of 2 hormones: an estrogen (ethinyl estradiol) and a progestin (norethindrone) and is used to prevent pregnancy. It works mainly by preventing the release of an egg (ovulation) during your menstrual cycle. It also can work by making vaginal fluid thicker to help prevent sperm from reaching an egg (fertilization) and by changing the lining of the uterus (womb) to prevent attachment of a fertilized egg. If a fertilized egg does not attach to the uterus, it passes out of the body.

This product also contains a small amount of iron (ferrous fumarate) in inactive tablets taken during the fourth week. The inactive pills do not contain any hormones. These tablets are meant to keep you in the habit of taking 1 tablet each day and do not have enough iron to treat iron deficiency.

Besides preventing pregnancy, birth control pills may make your periods more regular, decrease blood loss and painful periods, and decrease your risk of ovarian cysts.

Using this medication does not protect you or your partner against sexually transmitted diseases (such as HIV, gonorrhea, chlamydia).

OTHER USES: This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.

Birth control pills may also be used to treat premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) or moderate acne if you have chosen to use birth control pills as your method of pregnancy prevention.

How to use Loestrin 24 Fe oral

Read the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start taking this product and each time you get a refill. The leaflet contains important advice about when to take your pills, what to do if you miss a dose, and other information. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once daily with or without food. Pick a time of day that is easy for you to remember, and take your pill at the same time each day, 24 hours apart. Taking this medication after your evening meal or at bedtime may help decrease stomach upset and nausea.

Follow the package instructions to find the first tablet, start with the first tablet in the pack, and take them in the correct order. Do not skip any doses. Pregnancy is more likely if you miss pills, start a new pack late, or take your pill at a different time of the day than usual.

Your pill pack contains 26 pills with active medication (24 pills with norethindrone and ethinyl estradiol, 2 pills with only ethinyl estradiol). It also contains 2 reminder pills with iron. Take one active pill (with hormones) once daily for 26 days in a row. Take one reminder pill (with iron) once daily for 2 days in a row unless otherwise directed by your doctor. You will usually have your period during the reminder pill part of the cycle. After you have taken the last reminder tablet in the pack, start a new pack the next day whether or not you have your period. If you do not get your period, consult your doctor.

If you are taking certain medications (such as cefdinir, levodopa, penicillamine, quinolones such as ciprofloxacin, tetracyclines) that can interact with iron, ask your doctor whether you should throw away the reminder pills (iron tablets) each day rather than taking them. Iron can decrease the effect of these medications.

If this is the first time you are using this medication and you are not switching from another form of hormonal birth control (such as the patch, other birth control pills), take the first tablet in the pack on the first Sunday following the beginning of your menstrual period or on the first day of your period. If your period begins on a Sunday, begin taking this medication on that day. For the first cycle of use only, use an additional form of non-hormonal birth control (such as condoms, spermicide) for the first 7 days to prevent pregnancy until the medication has enough time to work. If you start on the first day of your period, you do not need to use back-up birth control the first week.

Ask your doctor or pharmacist for information about how to switch from other forms of hormonal birth control (such as the patch, other birth control pills) to this product.

Loestrin 24 Fe oral Side Effects

Nausea, vomiting, headache, bloating, breast tenderness, swelling of the ankles/feet (fluid retention), or weight change may occur. Vaginal bleeding between periods (spotting) or missed/irregular periods may occur, especially during the first few months of use. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor promptly. If you miss 2 periods in a row (or 1 period if the pill has not been used properly), contact your doctor for a pregnancy test.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these serious side effects occur: unusual changes in vaginal bleeding (such as continuous spotting, sudden heavy bleeding, missed periods).

This medication may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) problems from blood clots (such as deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, stroke, heart attack). Get medical help right away if you experience: chest/jaw/left arm pain, confusion, coughing up blood, pain/swelling/warmth in the groin/calf, slurred speech, sudden dizziness/fainting, sudden shortness of breath, sudden vision changes (such as partial/complete blindness), tingling/weakness/numbness in the arms/legs, unusual headaches (including headaches with vision changes/lack of coordination, worsening of migraines, sudden/very severe headaches), unusual sweating, weakness on one side of the body.

Get medical help right away if any of these rare but serious side effects occur: lumps in the breast, dark urine, mental/mood changes (such as new/worsening depression, suicidal thoughts), severe stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Loestrin 24 Fe oral Precautions

See also Warning section.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to any of its ingredients; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this product, tell your doctor your medical history, especially of: abnormal breast exam, blood clots (such as in the legs, eyes, lungs), blood clotting disorders (such as protein C or protein S deficiency), cancer (especially breast or endometrial cancer), heart problems (such as previous heart attack, heart valve disease, irregular heartbeat), high blood pressure, high cholesterol or triglyceride (blood fat) levels, history of yellowing eyes/skin (jaundice) during pregnancy or while using birth control pills, depression, diabetes, gallbladder problems, kidney problems, liver problems, severe headaches/migraines, stroke, swelling (edema), thyroid problems, unexplained vaginal bleeding, obesity.

If you have diabetes, this medication may make it harder to control your blood sugar level. Check your blood sugar level regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms of high blood sugar such as increased thirst/urination. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication or diet.

Tell your doctor if you just had or will be having major surgery, or if you will be confined to a chair or bed for a long time (such as a long plane flight). These conditions increase your risk of getting blood clots, especially if you are taking hormonal birth control products. You may need to stop this medication for a time or take special precautions.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).

This medication may cause blotchy, dark areas on your skin (melasma). Sunlight may worsen this effect. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, sunlamps, and tanning booths. Use a sunscreen, and wear protective clothing when outdoors.

If you are nearsighted or wear contact lenses, you may develop vision problems or trouble wearing your contact lenses. Contact your eye doctor if these problems occur.

It may take longer for you to become pregnant after you stop taking birth control pills. Consult your doctor.

This medication must not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately. If you have just given birth or had a pregnancy loss/abortion after the first 3 months, talk with your doctor about reliable forms of birth control, and find out when it is safe to start using birth control that contains a form of estrogen, such as this medication.

This medication passes into breast milk. This may affect milk production and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Loestrin 24 Fe oral Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Some products that may interact with this drug include: aromatase inhibitors (such as anastrazole, exemestane), ospemifene, tamoxifen, tizanidine.

Some drugs may cause hormonal birth control to work less well by decreasing the amount of birth control hormones in your body. This effect can result in pregnancy. Examples of these drugs include griseofulvin, modafinil, rifamycins (such as rifampin), St. John's wort, drugs used to treat seizures (such as barbiturates, carbamazepine, felbamate, phenytoin, primidone, topiramate), HIV drugs (such as nelfinavir, nevirapine, ritonavir), among others. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Tell your doctor when you start any new drug, and discuss whether you should use additional reliable birth control. Also tell your doctor if you have any new spotting or breakthrough bleeding, because these may be signs that your birth control is not working well.

This medication can affect the results of many laboratory tests. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this medication.

Loestrin 24 Fe oral Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe nausea and vomiting, sudden/unusual vaginal bleeding.

NOTES:

Do not share this medication with others.

Keep all regular medical and laboratory appointments. You should have regular complete physical exams which include laboratory and medical tests (such as blood pressure, breast exam, pelvic exam, pap smear) to monitor your progress and check for side effects. Follow your doctor's instructions for examining your own breasts, and report any lumps right away. Consult your doctor for more details.

MISSED DOSE:

Refer to the product package information for advice on missed doses. You may need to use back-up birth control (such as condoms, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

If you often forget to take your pills as directed, contact your doctor to discuss switching to another form of birth control.

STORAGE:

Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Keep all medications away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.

Information last revised May 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.

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