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Can I take oral contraceptives safely with hypertension?

Q: I have been married for 2 months now and opted for oral contraceptives for birth control. But I am a patient of hypertension and also have a minor leakage in my valves. Is it safe for me to take oral contraceptives? The other options available are injections that are once in three months and a ring, which needs to be inserted in vagina for three weeks. I take Cardace 2.5 mg once daily. My husband is not aware of the hypertension.

A:Oral contraceptives contain hormones; so does the contraceptive hormonal injection. Thus there is no difference between the oral and injection. The problem is that these hormonal contraceptives tend to increase blood pressure and hence the dose of anti-hypertensive agents may need to be increased. These agents also retain fluid and hence are contraindicated in women with cardiac disease. Due to the valve leak, it is not advisable to take contraceptives since fluid retention will put pressure on the heart. Even if these problems did not exist, married, committed couples should avoid the use of hormonal contraceptive agents. The use of condom has many advantages and is always preferable.


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