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Women of child-bearing age beware!!

Taking antibiotics while on birth control pills will decrease the effectiveness of the pill.

Not much time around here to blog, but I wanted to put something up really quick… The other day, I heard about yet another baby being conceived because the mother had been taking antibiotics while also using birth control pills. I know of 4 babies that are in the world right now due to those very circumstances.

In all cases, the mother has said that NO ONE informed her when she was prescribed antibiotics that they would decrease the effectiveness of the pill. I find this to be extremely sloppy practice, and that’s putting it nicely. I’m supposing it’s possible that it was mentioned as a “by the way” while the patient was gathering their things getting ready to leave. And I’m sure it’s on the leaflet that the pharmacy hands out, written in small print. Actually I’m not entirely sure of that, and although it is the patient’s responsibility to read about medications that they are prescribed, it is also the responsibility of the prescriber to notify the patient of any drug interactions or possible side effects.

I was thinking of this the other day, and maybe someone can answer it… Would antibiotics also interfere with the effectiveness of the other forms of hormonal birth control? Depo shots, Norplant, or the new patch?

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Interesting. I had never heard that before.

My daughter was told that about antibiotics and the pill. I don’t know about the other forms of birth control.

Since I’m on depo, I thought I’d go out to the website and see what it says:

According to http://www.depo-provera.com

Are there medicines I should avoid now that I

I’m on the patch and when I had to take antibiotics they stressed over and over that I needed extra protection. So yes I believe it’s the same as the normal pills. Thanks for letting people know about that though- it’s so important to know to use backup!!!

When i was in college, it was always stressed upon me that antibios decreased effectiveness of the pill. however, once i left college, i was never informed of it by any doctor who prescribed antibios for an illness. Maybe the campus docs were just more aware that their patients would be actively having sex?

Another note that should be made for those who gravitate toward herbal remedies: St John’s Wort also decreases effectiveness of the pill.

Hi- It’s my first time coming to your blog. In regards to antibiotics and birth control pills. I have been told and heard for years that antibiotics can decrease the effectivness, however, last year I was sick and given antibiotics and since I take birth control pills I asked the nurse practictioner and she told me that as for as she knew that was not a problem anymore or not true. Weird how you hear so many different things! I was careful anyways not wanting any more babies!!

I don’t think the premise is true.
See my post today…

I’m on the pill and taking antibiotics and I can’t decide what to do in regards to sex. I have read that they decrease the effectiveness but I have also heard equally that it’s just not true, it’s only true for certain antibios.. I just don’t know what to think. And it’s not that easy for me to just go to the store and buy a pack of condoms either. I dont’ know who to listen to. My boyfriends sister is on the pill and antibios and she still had unprotected sex with her husband and it didn’t affect her. There should be soemthing available for people to read that’s current and recent and well tested. I’m only 18, I can’t just go get condoms, I still have to be descrete for my mom’s sake! There should be a properly researched answer to go by.

I am the proud parent of one of those children, before they even knew that it could happen. One of my nursing instructors said recently “there are still MD’s out there that don’t believe it, but we women KNOW it is true.”

Shortly before getting my Depo shot I started taking anti-botics for a sinus infection. I was attacked at a party, but since I had my shot I thought I was safe. I was wrong. Two months later I found out I was pregnant. Due to some complications, I lost the child, but my doctor and I were both stunned that I became pregnant. I make it a point now to tell anyone I know taking any type of antibotic and using any form of pill or shot to use extra protection.

I am an asthmatic and became extremely ill with a chest infection…hence I was prescribe the steroid Prednisolone and a strong antibiotic Clavulin Duo Forte, all in the same week(12) that my depo provera was due. With being ill making a doctors appointment was overlooked for the injection. I have arrived here in my reasearch to find out what my risk levels are and the sites that I have come across say pretty much the same thing:The effectiveness of parenteral progestogen-only contraceptives is not affected by broad-spectrum antibiotics.

So given the medications and my delay in my 3rd injection am I at risk of becoming pregnant?????

Almost four years ago, I was put on antibiotics for an ear infection that wouldn’t go away. I asked my doctor if this specific antibiotic would interfere with my birth control prescription, and was told, “Absolutely not.”

My son was born nine months later.

I was on antibiotics and I’m on the depo shot and just finished last week for bronchitis and a UTI , well my boyfriend and I live a distance from each other and he came down to see me this weekend and we had sex without condoms but at my check up while still on the antibiotics my Dr said to use another method such as condoms for the next 28 days, could I possibly end up pregnant???

I was just looking on here for the effects of antibiotics like Biaxin while your on depo. Does it cancel depo out also???

i have to say that i’ve been bleeding since last feb and still am.I’ve decided to get off depo after reading about this on the site.i wanna be able to have kids later on.I hope i won’t get whatever these women had gone thru.
pls be careful of taking depo shots in the future…here are some from other women who’ve taken them b4.

I’m sure that there are many women out there how are perfectly happy with Depo. I’m not one of them. In fact, I’ve never met anyone who is happy with it. Even though I asked about side-effects, I was never told what I now consider the truth. Now I will cut to the point: Depo-Provera caused me to have my period for not a month, not two months, not even three months. After being injected with it, I had my period for over 5 months without it ever stopping (exactly 160 days), and there was nothing that could be done to stop it. I saw several doctors who told me that I would just have to wait, so I did. It’s been almost a year and I’m still having side effects (a period every 2 weeks). The doctors tried putting me on the pill and it only made things worse. Finally they just took me off everything, because my body was so screwed up that they thought it needed a break. Before this, I had never had any problems at all with my period; they had been like clockwork.

I feel that I should post my experiences with Depo Provera so that other women might take a second look at the side effects of this drug. I received the injection from Sept. 1993 til Jan. 1997 and had no problems; I thought it was wonderful– the perfect birth control. I had my third child in Oct. of 1998 and in Dec. I started taking the drug again since it had been so easy before. A month after receiving the first injection I felt very shaky and nervous. I was so tired that I could hardly get out of bed. All of my energy seemed to be gone. As the weeks went by the lethargy and nervousness increased. I became very angry and hateful. Little everyday occurances would send me into an uncontrolled rage. I began having severe anxiety attacks, my weight skyrocketed (30 lbs. gain in 3 and a half months), my hair began falling out, sex drive kicked the bucket, I also became very paranoid. I could not understand what was happening. I have always been a very stable, loving, caring person. My whole personality has changed so much that I wonder at times if the real “me” is still here. I am scared of who I have become. I thought for three months that I had simply lost my marbles. I can honestly say that I know what it is like to be on the verge of insanity. Something that I was sure would never happen to me…of all people. Two days after I had gotten my second injection in March 1999, (thought I would do a little researching on what I was putting into my body) I came across a Depo Provera web page. It had story after story after story, from hundreds of women, that were describing exactly what I was going through right down to the hair loss!!!! It hit me so hard that I just cried, out of relief that, maybe, I wasn’t as loony as I thought and it wasn’t just my fault. I then became VERY angry that nobody tells you how severe and life-changing the depression and fatigue that they mention in the pamphlet can be. I never saw it until I went to a pharmacy and asked for a pamphlet on the drug. The side effects that all these women, including myself, are experiencing are there but it makes it out to be no big deal. Only 1-5% experience some and less than 1% experience other problems is what it read. If that were true why am I coming across women every single day that have had severe problems with it? It seems to me and others that it is a bigger problem than UpJohn is willing to admit to. If they told us what it could do they would lose money because no woman would want to take this chemical. We need to be aware of what it does to our bodies. I feel that I have lost who I am for a lousy couple of bucks to a drug company that hides the fact that we are guinea pigs for them! I wouldn’t wish this hell on my worst enemy! So, please, be aware of what you are putting in your body….remember that it is yours!!!

I was on the DP shot from June 97 to Sept 97. In that short amount of time I gained weightt, lost my sex drive, and suffered from depression and constant spotting. Needless to say, both my husband and I were getting annoyed with the side effects, so I decided to get off the shot. It has been 17 months since my last injection. Since that last shot the side effects remained until about 5 months ago. I finally enjoy having sex again, and my periods have gotton more regular, but I never know when my cycle is going to begin. My husband and I are trying to have a baby now with no luck. I was never told that the drug could stay in a woman’s system for so long after stopping the drug. I feel like it is totally out of my system now since I got my period back and have no other side effects. So why can’t I conceive? I feel like I am unable to get pregnant because this shot. I think that this Depo shot really messed up my body, and I totally regret ever getting it. I’ve heard of women who are still trying to get pregnant after being off the drug for over 2 years and are unsuccessful. This information was not on the pamphlet. If I had known this, the shot would have not been an option for me. So all you women out there who are considering this as a good contraceptive– listen to all the skeptics. The doctors do not tell you everything so be sure to ask around and get more information on this before you make a decision.

i see so many different comments on the depo that i really dont know what to think. i was on it once with no problems but now my body is going crazy.

I started depo in november 2005, and got my second shot in february 2006 I am due again in May and am definately not going in to get another one. I wish I would have listened and believed everything I heard about the shot. I have been bleeding for 5 and a half weeks now, I think my husband is ready to divorce me due to the mood swings, nervousness, and depression. We were married a month ago and haven’t been able to have sex since, because it hurts me to much and not to mention the constant bleeding. Now I am reading that it can take me up to 2 years to concieve…they never told me that…they also never told me that I may never be able to concieve again….I want 3 kids to sibling my 2 year old. I just wanted to tell my story I am really suffering trying to find ways to rid this drug of my body, but nothing prevails. I am 23 and this was my first and last time on birth control I am letting mother nature take it from here….

I have never heard so many horrible things in my life about a medication. I have been a nurse for 17 years and have always informed any female getting an order for antibiotics that another method of birth control should be used for specified amounts of time after finishing an antibiotic treatment. I personally have been on Depo for the last 3 1/2 years. I had a small amount of spotting, mostly when using the bathroom for about 6 months after getting my first shot, never on my clothing. I have not experienced one single problem and am extremely happy to say that I have been period free ever since. PMS was a huge problem for me while on all types of birth control pills for the 10 years before the shot. If I could have removed myself from my own being I would have, I couldn’t stand being around myself let alone expecting any of my family to be around me, I was a nasty witch for about 5 days prior to my period before, I have never been so happy with any other type of birth control as I am with Depo. I always tease and say that a woman must have created this because no man could ever be that sensative a woman’s needs to fix her up like it has done me. I mean no periods, no PMS symptoms, not even bloating, of course no cramps, no hateful side of me. Life has never been so GREAT ! ! !

I got on Depo March 20th and was due to go back June 5th for my next one. I decided not to because I wanted to get pregnant. I’m 21 years old and the SHOT has been hell since I been on it and til now that I stopped it. All I do is BLEED. During sex is a pain my boyfriend didn’t know what the hell was going on with me. I’m suffering with an UTI thats painful and itchy and Bloating My boyfriend isn’t talking to me now. Because I do is fight and argue with him. I wish I never gotten on this stuff sometimes I feel like I’m pregnant and I want to be so bad but all it ever be is slight cramping and bleeding for days. I don’y know whether its my period or what. So gross stay away from the DEPO SHOT!~!

I’ve been on the shot for 6 months now, and it has worked out really well for me. I lost the 20lbs I gained on the pill, because my appetite became normal again, had no periods, and no mood changes or general PMS stuff.. I wanted to say that the people with horror stories are the ones who tend to write (I came across the site looking for info on anti-biotic interferance). The side-effects mentioned here are all mentioned on the leaflet that comes with the shot people! But I am sorry to hear that the health care practitioners you have not informed you of the possibilities.. Then again, there is personal responsibility with ANY medication to READ the info and ASK questions, like “when will my full fertility return?”.. And the horror stories which occur very rarely ( I say this as an experienced nurse who is currently at medschool) should not put off other people from what is an excellent form of contraception in the vast majority of cases. Have a nice day!

I was on the shot a couple of years ago and then went off it for about a year. I am back on it and have been for about nine months. I have just recently been diagnosed with mild depression. I have no energy and no sex drive. I have felt this way for a few years. I couldnt say that it is due to the depo. when the depression started i wanst on depo. I am sick of having no energy and will do anything to feel normal again but getting pregnant is absolutely not something that would help me right now. I am thinking of taking Saint John’s Wort but am unsure if it is safe to take while on depo.

Rack up another one. Was married and using oral contraceptives for birth control when I had my kidney infection. I wasn’t in any state to remember to inform anyone about my birth control, no one bothered to ask me in my more lucid intervals, and no one asked my husband. I wasn’t even given the information as a potential drug interaction on my discharge sheet. What to do if I had a delayed allergic reaction to the IV antibiotics I’d had, yes. But not that. And I was MARRIED. One might assume married people, you know, have sex.

We terminated, because we couldn’t afford another baby then, and I was furious at the hospital and their systems that let it happen. Do I NOW look up every. single. drug, shell out for a Nurse’s Drug Reference yearly? Yes. But I would have preferred not to have to go through that entire process to learn that I can’t trust the people I’m trusting to keep my kidneys functioning to tell me about a (fairly common, I should imagine) drug reaction that severely changes one’s life.

I was on the depo shot for about 2 years. Starting in 2000 and ending in 2002.I am 26 years old and very healthy.I have a child now 8 years old. I have yet been able to concieve a child since my last dose. It’s upsetting to me because I would like to have another someday. I need to know if there are such side effects from the depo shot preventing me to concieve?

I have been on the shot for 5 and a half years…3 and a half years over the recommended amount of time. The first 4 years went by fine with no problems other than having no period (but who can’t get used to that!) the last year or so is a different story. I’ve been depressed, moody and even my mother has asked me if I might be bipolar. My sex drive and energy levels are pretty much ZERO. My doctor NEVER suggested that I quit the shot after 2 years, only saying she would take me off it if I gained too much weight. I mentioned to her last year that I thought I had seasonal depression, too bad she didn’t consider my birth control to be a factor. (Then again, I had no reason to suspect it has something to do with a shot I have been getting for years) I think that part of the problem is that I did not have a separate doctor and gynecologist, as I’ve heard from many people that gynos seem to be more informed and in touch with their patients on things like birth control. I was due for my shot 10 days ago and needless to say, I won’t be getting depo again. I have an appointment with my new doc tomorrow, where ill be seeing about getting a bone scan, since depo is linked with the loss of bone mass (omg the stories I’ve read lately!) and an appointment with a new gyno next month to discuss what options are best for me. I figure that if I’m lucky, I won’t get a call in a couple weeks on my 25th birthday to inform me I have osteoporosis. I wish this poison would leave my body!

Are they any way i can get pregnant on depo-provera, I’m allergic to latex and I have One kid already and I sure dont need another one. I’ve been on it for 20 months now! HELP!!

I’m only 19 years old. I have been having sex since the age of 14 years old. Yes I know it’s very sad but at the age of 16years old I was pregnant but unfortunately I had a miscarriage . But I what made the miscarriage worse was the fetus died inside of me. I had to get it surgically taken out. The day i had gotten it taken out I was put on the depo provera. I was one that form of birth control for 1 year and a half and I stopped getting my period 3 months into taking the birth control. since I gottten off the depo i have eeen on the pill and the nuva ring but now that I’m engaged and I want a child so bad it seems almost impossible to concieve a child. I get so discouraged and my fiance also he thinks I am unable to become pregnant.

I came here seeking information about the side effects of antib. while using depo provera–not much help, but I can say that I have a beautiful 3 yr old daughter concieved while religiously using the patch–Ortho evra. I, too was given an antibiotic for an ear infection. I kept experiencing abdominal pain and extreme fatigue–had an ultrasound and found out I was almost 19 wks! So, if anyone has any info on s/o they know getting pregnant w/ DP..please share…thanks

i have been off depo for 5 yrs and still can not concieve. i only get a period every 5 months and only for 2 days i have a 7 year old and want another one. I did not know it could make you unable to have kids after going off it please help!!!!



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  • profileI am Gina. I have been a nurse for 15 years, first in med/surg, then CVICU, inpatient dialysis, CCU and now hospice. This blog is about my experiences as a nurse, and the experiences of others in the healthcare system - patients, nurses, doctors, paramedics. We all have stories!

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