Medically the evaluation by Nicole Galan, RN — composed by Annette McDermott — update on January 31, 2019


You are watching: Drugs that interfere with birth control

If you’ve ever before taken birth manage pills and also antibiotics at the very same time, girlfriend may have actually been told the antibiotics make the pills less effective. Numerous antibiotic details sheets come through a warning that say antibiotics may make birth manage pills less effective. Does proof support the claim, or is it simply a myth?


Birth regulate pills are a type of hormonal contraception meant to avoid pregnancy. Most birth regulate pills contain the two hormones estrogen and also progesterone. This help block the release of eggs from the ovary, or ovulation. Part birth manage pills, such together the minipill, aid thicken cervical rubber to do it more challenging for sperm to reach an unfertilized egg.


To date, the just antibiotic proven to impact birth control pills is rifampin. This drug is provided to treat tuberculosis and other bacterial infections. If you take this medicine while using birth control pills, that decreases the hormone levels in your birth manage pills. This diminish in hormone levels can affect whether ovulation is prevented. In other words, her birth regulate becomes much less effective. Rifampin additionally decreases hormone levels in the birth regulate patch and vaginal ring.

A study published in the newspaper of the American Academy of skiership concluded the hormone levels continue to be unchanged as soon as the following commonly prescribed antibiotics space taken v birth manage pills:

clarithromycindoxycyclinemetronidazoleroxithromycintemafloxacin

Other drugs may make birth manage less effective, together as:

some anti-HIV protease inhibitorssome anti-seizure medicationsthe antifungal drug griseofulvin

Birth control pills may make various other drugs less effective, such as analgesics and blood pressure medications. The effects of antidepressants, bronchodilators, and also tranquilizers may be enhanced when you usage them through birth manage pills.


There isn’t lot scientific research study on the disadvantage side effects of taking antibiotics v birth manage pills. In theory, similar side effects of both drugs might worsen once both species of drugs room taken together. This side results may include:

nauseavomitingdiarrheachanges in appetiteheadachesdizziness

Side effects vary depending upon the person and also the course of antibiotic taken. No everyone that takes birth manage pills and also antibiotics experiences negative side effects.

Despite anecdotal proof that antibiotics lessen the efficiency of birth manage pills, there may be other components at pat that result in birth regulate failure. For example, you may not take your birth control pills on time or you might skip a pill or 2 if you ill. You may not absorb the pill properly if you’re vomiting. While it might seem that antibiotics space to blame, it may be a coincidence.


When used as directed, birth regulate pills room up come 99 percent efficient in avoiding pregnancy. Most birth control pills space taken everyday for 21 days on and seven job off. Part pills room taken for 28 right days and others because that 91 straight days. Pills may be different colors to indicate various levels the hormones. Some days you may take pills the contain no hormones. They’re expected to keep you in the habit of taking your pills.

Your medical professional will advise you around when to begin taking her pills. This is commonly the an initial Sunday after your menstrual bicycle starts or the very first day of your menstrual cycle. You must take your pills at the same time each day. If you nothing take her pills consistently, your threat of becoming pregnant increases.


Birth regulate pills are just one of many birth control options. Other choices include:

pillsshotsrings condomsimplantsdiaphragms

The U.S. Department of Health and also Human services recommends asking yourself this questions as soon as deciding which alternative is best for you:

Do you want to have children some day?Do friend have any medical problems?How regularly do you have actually sex?How countless sex partners do you have?Will the birth manage prevent HIV and also other sexually sent diseases?How fine does the birth control work?What space the next effects?Is it an overwhelming or inconvenient to use?

When it involves birth control pills, the options can be confusing. No every mrs is a an excellent candidate for every kind of birth manage pill. For example, if you’re older than 35 and also you exhilaration or have actually a background of heart an illness or stroke, then combination birth regulate pills may not it is in a great choice for you. If you have breast cancer or unexplained uterine bleeding, minipills may not it is in the ideal fit.

Which Birth control Is best for You?

The ideal person to aid you figure out the best birth regulate for friend is your doctor. Lock can comment on the pros and also cons that each technique with factor to consider for your particular situation and also answer your questions.


With the exception of the medicine rifampin, there’s little evidence that antibiotics interfere through birth manage pills. More research is needed, and some doctors think there’s not sufficient evidence to disprove the risk. To be on the safe side, you might want to use a backup form of bear control, such together a condom or diaphragm, while taking antibiotics.


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Medically the review by Nicole Galan, RN — written by Annette McDermott — to update on January 31, 2019