While the birth control drug Yaz/Yasmin has been under a lot of scrutiny lately with the risks it poses (like heart attacks and strokes) and the questionable advertising practices of its makers (Bayer), something else is causing quite a stir. It seems that Yaz/Yasmin also is being associated with causing gallbladder problems in women. What’s worse: Treatment for some women even includes painful gallbladder surgery to correct it.
The reason for this discovery is because Yaz/Yasmin contains drospirenone. This is a newer synthetic variety of progestin not currently used in any other birth control drug approved in the United States. According to a study that was published in the British Medical Journal, using Yaz/Yasmin or a generic version (Ocella) could double the chances of getting blood clots.
One South Carolina woman took Yaz/Yasmin to treat her acne problem and ended up with blood clots in her lungs. A month later the woman had gallstones and ended up having to have gallbladder surgery to correct it. She since has filed a lawsuit against Bayer because of it and the other lawsuits started rolling in. While there are warnings against taking Yaz/Yasmin if you already have previous medical conditions like gallbladder disease, Bayer still is being charged with failure to fully disclose all of the warnings to consumers.
Like most pharmaceutical companies, Bayer played up the positive sides of the drugs, including a better complexion and less serious menstrual symptoms. The company also downplayed the more severe side effects such as severe cardiac complications, strokes, pulmonary embolism, breast lumps and even death.
Yaz/Yasmin’s gallbladder problems can prevent the gallbladder from doing its job properly, which is to store bile that the liver produces and help digest fats in small intestine. It usually starts with the production of gallstones, but it can easily escalate from there. Once the gallbladder problems reach their peek, often times it requires surgery to fix.