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Minerva Ginecologica 2018 February;70(1):1-26

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4784.17.04157-0


language: Italian

Customization of hormonal contraception

Vincenzo DE LEO 1 , Antonio CIANCI 2, Costantino DI CARLO 3, Valentina CAPPELLI 1, Franca FRUZZETTI 4

1 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Siena, Siena, Italy; 2 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; 3 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Catanzaro, Catanzaro, Italy; 4 Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy


In the last few years new oral contraceptives have been marketed showing a better safety profile for women. They are the result of important changes made to the old compounds. As far as the estrogenic component, with the aim of decreasing side effects, the dose of ethinyl estradiol has been reduced and synthetic estrogens have been replaced by natural estradiol, further improving the safety profile. Also the progestin component in the last years has been changed in terms of dose, endocrine and metabolic characteristics. Levonorgestrel is an androgenic progestin, but now there is the possibility of choosing progestins without androgenic effect (gestodene and desogestrel) or progestins with antiandrogenic effect (cyproterone acetate, dienogest, drospirenone, chlormadinone acetate), very useful in patients with hyperandrogenism. Some of these progestins, like Drospirenone, represented the real held contributing, because of its antimineralcorticoid action, to reduce an important side effect like fluid retention; moreover there is the possibility to choose products with high progestogen effect on endometrium (dienogest, nomegestrole acetate), resulting very effective in women with abnormal uterine bleedings. Also the regimens of administration have been changed, by shortening or eliminating the tablet-free period; in this way the women may avoid premenstrual symptoms. The oral is not the only route of administration, but today there are alternative routes like transdermal, transvaginal, intrauterine and subcutaneous, reducing gastro-intestinal interferences and possible mistakes in pill intake.

KEY WORDS: Contraception - Contraception behavior - Women

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