Sprintec Side Effects

Common Side Effects of Sprintec

Since it is difficult to obtain much information about side effects from studies that do not use a placebo (since it is difficult to know if any particular problem is actually a side effect of the medication), only vague information is available about Sprintec side effects. In fact, the side effects listed in the prescribing information for Sprintec are actually side effects of all birth control pills in general (not necessarily of Sprintec in particular). Some of the common bothersome (but usually not dangerous) side effects of birth control pills include:
  • Changes in your eyes that make it more difficult to wear contact lenses
  • Bloating
  • Headaches (although birth control pills can improve headaches in some women)
  • Breakthrough bleeding and spotting between periods (especially for the first few cycles)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Breast tenderness other breast changes (such as swelling)
  • Changes in sex drive (often a decrease, rather than an increase).

Birth Control Pills and Clinical Trials

Before medications are approved in the United States, they must undergo several clinical studies to show that they are both safe and effective. In the clinical studies for most medications, one group of people is given the actual medication, while another group is given a placebo (a "sugar pill" with no active ingredients). The people are not told if they are taking the real medication or the placebo.
The side effects in both groups are carefully documented and compared. This way, it is possible to see what side effects occur, how often they appear, and whether they are actual side effects of the medication. However, it is not usually possible to use a placebo in clinical trials for contraceptives, as this would lead to many unintentional pregnancies.
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD
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