Chewable Birth Control Available

Spearmint-Flavored Contraceptive Can be Chewed or Swallowed Whole

Medically Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD on December 08, 2006
From the WebMD Archives

Dec. 8, 2006 - A spearmint-flavored, chewable birth-control pill is now available by prescription at U.S. drug stores.

Introduced last September as Ovcon 35 Chewable, it is now dubbed Femcon Fe by Warner Chilcott, which markets the chewable made by Bristol Myers Squibb.

The pill may be chewed -- followed by a full glass of water so the full dose reaches the stomach, with no residue left in the mouth. Or it can be swallowed whole.

Why a chewable pill? Birth control pills don't work if you don't take them, notes Laurent Delli-Bovi, MD, medical director for Boston's Chestnut Hill Family Planning Facility.

"Research has shown that compliance still impacts oral contraceptive failure rates, and anything we can do to make it easier for our patients to maintain a daily regimen is a notable advancement," Delli-Bovi says in a Warner Chilcott news release.

Like other birth-control pills, Femcon Fe is a 28-day regimen. Each pack has 21 white tablets containing the active ingredients: progestin, norethindrone 0.4 mg, and estrogen (ethinyl estradiol, 35 mcg). The pack also includes seven brown "reminder" tablets.

All 28 tablets contain 75 mg of an iron supplement.