Precautions and Warnings With Viorele

Specific Viorele Precautions and Warnings

Some of the warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to using this drug include the following:
  • Combined oral contraceptives, including Viorele, increase the risk of blood clots, strokes, and heart attacks. These risks are minimal for healthy, young nonsmokers. Make sure to tell your healthcare provider if you have ever had a blood clot, stroke, heart attack, or chest pain.
  • Smoking cigarettes greatly increases the risk of serious Viorele side effects, such as heart attacks, strokes, and blood clots. This risk is particularly high for smokers over the age of 35.
  • Viorele does not protect against HIV, AIDS, or other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). In many cases, it is advisable to use condoms in addition to Viorele.
  • Combined oral contraceptives may also slightly increase the risk of breast cancer or cervical cancer, although this is an unresolved and controversial issue. However, combined oral contraceptives seem to help protect women against ovarian and uterine cancer.
  • Birth control pills are sometimes not the best contraceptive choice for obese women. The pills may be less effective in these women, and obese women may be at a higher risk for developing serious Viorele side effects.
  • Oral contraceptives increase the risk of benign (noncancerous) liver tumors. Very rarely, these tumors can rupture and cause serious problems.
  • Hormonal contraceptives, such as Viorele, can make gallbladder disease worse. If you have had a problem with your gallbladder, Viorele may not be the best contraceptive method for you.
  • Viorele may increase blood sugar levels, particularly in women with diabetes. Your healthcare provider may need to monitor you more closely. Let your healthcare provider know if you have any sudden vision changes, as this may be a sign of a blood clot in the eyes (a possible side effect of Viorele and other hormonal contraceptives).
  • If you experience a migraine for the first time (or have any changes in your migraines if you have had them before) while taking Viorele, please contact your healthcare provider.
  • Viorele can change your menstrual bleeding patterns. Some women have breakthrough bleeding (bleeding between periods), while others may not have a period at all. It is normal to have shorter and lighter periods while using Viorele. If you notice any unusual changes in your bleeding patterns, let your healthcare provider know. If you miss a period, you should make sure you are not pregnant.
  • Sometimes, hormonal contraceptives can make depression worse. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop new or worsening depression symptoms.
  • Hormonal contraceptives, including Viorele, can occasionally cause eye changes that make it more difficult to wear contact lenses.
  • Viorele is a pregnancy Category X medication. This means that you should not use Viorele during pregnancy (see Mircette and Pregnancy, as Viorele is a generic version of Mircette).
  • Contraceptive hormones, such as the ones in Viorele, do pass through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the contraceptive (see Mircette and Breastfeeding). Combined hormonal contraceptives, such as Viorele, are not usually recommended for breastfeeding women.
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD
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