Birth Control Pills and Mirena IUDs – Scarier than Zombies?!


Recently, while watching the season finale of my favorite zombie show, what I found most intriguing wasn’t the award-winning acting or the intricate story lines, it was the aggressive commercials that followed.  Lately there seems to be an overwhelming increase in television ads pandering to our greatest medical fears.

Yaz, Mirena, Robot Surgery, the list goes on!   There you are, enjoying your favorite show and suddenly an actor for “Don’t Hate, Just Litigate!” law-firm informs you that the very birth control pill your OBGYN just prescribed may cause you to develop a life-threatening blood clot!  Now the zombies don’t seem nearly as scary.

Instead of succumbing to the fear-mongering advertisements, there are a few simple suggestions:

  1. Please do not panic.  Try to remember that medications, implantable contraceptive devices and surgical instruments all undergo rigorous testing to ensure that they are safe and effective before they are approved for use by physicians and patients.
  2. Please be aware of the source of the information.  Let recap:  actors act, lawyers litigate, and physicians heal.  It is unlikely you would schedule a visit with your OBGYN for a legal consultation.  Likewise, it may not be best to use your local cable network for medical advice.
  3. Call the Virginia Beach OB/GYN Center.  Our health care providers are all well-versed in these products including the indications, risks, benefits, and alternatives.  We would be happy to address your concerns.  You should always feel comfortable asking questions and we will make ourselves available to help answer them to the best of our ability!

So before you stop taking your birth control or remove your own Mirena IUD, relax!  Kick your feet back up and remember these pointers.  Let us know how we can help you, and let’s leave all of the drama to the zombies!

-Ilene Goldstein, M.D.