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Date of last update: 10/14/2017.

Forum Name: Gynecology

Question: I'm having problems choosing a safe form of birth control.

 grnidvxn - Sun Apr 13, 2008 7:23 pm

Hello there :)

I'm getting married in the fall and am having trouble finding a birth control option that seems "right" for me. My doctor prescribed me NuvaRing, but after reading the product information, I'm not sure if I should use it.
I'm 21 years old, I've never smoked, but I'm not in the best physical shape. I'm overweight, and my family has a history of heart disease and stroke. My grandmother had her leg amputated because of a blood clot. So naturally, I'm not sure if the NuvaRing is a good choice for me. I have no children (but I do want children) and would prefer not to use an IUD. Are there any other options with fewer hormones? I don't really want a cervical cap or anything I have to mess with everytime before intercourse.
I would like to start having children within 2 or 3 years. What can you tell me about Depo-Provera or the minipill? Sorry for such an involved question, I tried to talk to my doctor but he just insisted the NuvaRing was safe and didn't really discuss options with me.

Thank you!
 Debbie Miller, RN - Tue Jul 08, 2008 7:10 pm

User avatar Hello,
Congratulations on your upcoming marriage.

Any hormonal birth control will carry some risk if you are prone to blood clots. Smoking would definitely increase your risk so you have that in your favor. I'm not sure why you are opposed to an IUD but this sounds like the best form to me. Even the one that releases a small amount of hormone is still safer than strictly hormonal medications. The mini-pill is not really designed for this use and must be taken religiously at the same time every day. Most people are not so good at this so it is best reserved for someone who is breastfeeding and that additional hormonal action makes the mini pill quite effective.

Aside from permanent sterilization, your options are limited. The Nuvaring is likely to be fine for you but it does use hormones so there would be some risk. You also have more risk of blood clots if you have diabetes, high cholesterol or high blood pressure (all related to obesity). If you are able to reduce your weight through diet and exercise it would also reduce your risks here.

Best wishes.

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