Generic Name: ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone (ETH in il ess tra DYE ole and nor ETH in drone)Brand Names: Aranelle, Balziva, Brevicon, Briellyn, Cyclafem 1/35, Cyclafem 7/7/7, Estrostep Fe, Femcon FE, Generess Fe, Gildess FE 1.5/0.03, Gildess FE 1/0.2, Junel 1.5/30, Junel 1/20, Junel Fe 1.5/30, Junel Fe 1/20, Leena, Lo Loestrin Fe, Loestrin 21 1.5/30, Loestrin 21 1/20, Loestrin 24 Fe, Loestrin Fe 1.5/30, Loestrin Fe 1/20, Microgestin 1.5/30, Microgestin 1/20, Microgestin FE 1.5/30, Microgestin FE 1/20, Modicon, Necon 0.5/35, Necon 1/35, Necon 10/11, Necon 7/7/7, Norinyl 1+35, Nortrel 0.5/35, Nortrel 1/35, Nortrel 7/7/7, Ortho-Novum 1/35, Ortho-Novum 7/7/7, Ovcon 35, Ovcon 35 Fe, Ovcon 50, Tilia Fe, Tri-Legest Fe, Tri-Norinyl, Zenchent Fe, Zeosa
What is Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?
Ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone contains a combination of female hormones that prevent ovulation (the release of an egg from an ovary). This medication also causes changes in your cervical mucus and uterine lining, making it harder for sperm to reach the uterus and harder for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus.
Ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone are used as contraception to prevent pregnancy. It is also used to treat severe acne.
Ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?Do not use birth control pills if you are pregnant or if you have recently had a baby. Do not use this medication if you have any of the following conditions: a history of stroke or blood clot, circulation problems, a hormone-related cancer such as breast or uterine cancer, abnormal vaginal bleeding, liver disease or liver cancer, or a history of jaundice caused by birth control pills.
You may need to use back-up birth control, such as condoms or a spermicide, when you first start using this medication. Follow your doctor's instructions.Taking hormones can increase your risk of blood clots, stroke, or heart attack, especially if you smoke and are older than 35.
Some drugs can make birth control pills less effective, which may result in pregnancy. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?This medication can cause birth defects. Do not use if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant, or if you miss two menstrual periods in a row. If you have recently had a baby, wait at least 4 weeks before taking birth control pills (6 weeks if you are breast-feeding). You should not take birth control pills if you have:
coronary artery disease, a severe or uncontrolled heart valve disorder, untreated or uncontrolled high blood pressure-
a history of a stroke, blood clot, or circulation problems-
a hormone-related cancer such as breast or uterine cancer-
unusual vaginal bleeding that has not been checked by a doctor-
liver disease or liver cancer-
severe migraine headaches- or
a history of jaundice caused by pregnancy or birth control pills.
To make sure you can safely take this medication, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
high blood pressure or a history of heart disease-
high cholesterol, gallbladder disease, or diabetes-
migraine headaches or a history of depression- or
a history of breast cancer or an abnormal mammogram.
How should I take Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Take your first pill on the first day of your period or on the first Sunday after your period begins (follow your doctor's instructions).
You may need to use back-up birth control, such as condoms or a spermicide, when you first start using this medication. Follow your doctor's instructions.
The 28-day birth control pack contains seven "reminder" pills to keep you on your regular cycle. Your period will usually begin while you are using these reminder pills.You may have breakthrough bleeding, especially during the first 3 months. Tell your doctor if this bleeding continues or is very heavy.
Take one pill every day, no more than 24 hours apart. When the pills run out, start a new pack the following day. You may get pregnant if you do not use this medication regularly. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of pills completely.
The chewable tablet may be chewed or swallowed whole. If chewed, drink a full glass of water just after you swallow the pill.
If you need surgery or medical tests or if you will be on bed rest, you may need to stop using this medication for a short time. Any doctor or surgeon who treats you should know that you are using birth control pills.
Your doctor will need to check your progress on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Missing a pill increases your risk of becoming pregnant. If you miss one "active" pill, take two pills on the day that you remember. Then take one pill per day for the rest of the pack.
If you miss two "active" pills in a row in week one or two, take two pills per day for two days in a row. Then take one pill per day for the rest of the pack. Use back-up birth control for at least 7 days following the missed pills.
If you miss two "active" pills in a row in week three, or if you miss three pills in a row during any of the first 3 weeks, throw out the rest of the pack and start a new one the same day if you are a Day 1 starter. If you are a Sunday starter, keep taking a pill every day until Sunday. On Sunday, throw out the rest of the pack and start a new one that day.If you miss two or more pills, you may not have a period during the month. If you miss a period for two months in a row, call your doctor because you might be pregnant.
If you miss any reminder pills, throw them away and keep taking one pill per day until the pack is empty. You do not need back-up birth control if you miss a reminder pill.
What happens if I overdose?Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and vaginal bleeding.
What should I avoid while taking Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?Do not smoke while using birth control pills, especially if you are older than 35. Smoking can increase your risk of blood clots, stroke, or heart attack caused by birth control pills.
Birth control pills will not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases--including HIV and AIDS. Using a condom is the only way to protect yourself from these diseases.
Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone) side effectsGet emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives- difficulty breathing- swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using this medication and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body-
sudden severe headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance-
sudden cough, wheezing, rapid breathing, coughing up blood-
pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in one or both legs-
chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling-
a change in the pattern or severity of migraine headaches-
pain in your upper stomach, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)-
a lump in your breast-
swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet- or
symptoms of depression (sleep problems, weakness, mood changes).
Less serious side effects may include:
mild nausea or vomiting, appetite or weight changes-
breast swelling or tenderness-
headache, nervousness, dizziness-
problems with contact lenses-
freckles or darkening of facial skin, loss of scalp hair- or
vaginal itching or discharge.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect Cyclafem 7/7/7 (ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone)?
Some drugs can make ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone less effective, which may result in pregnancy. Before using ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:
acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ascorbic acid (vitamin C)-
St. John's wort-
theophylline (Elixophyllin, Theo-24, Uniphyl)-
HIV or AIDS medications-
phenobarbital (Solfoton) and other barbiturates- or
This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with birth control pills. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
Where can I get more information?
Your pharmacist can provide more information about ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.