§ Mrs. Fyfe
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what information she has on the effects of high doses of hormones on women taking oral contraceptives.
§ Mr. Sackville
[holding answer 8 February 1993]: Oral contraceptives containing high doses of hormones are more likely than low-dose preparations to cause side-effects. The most serious side-effects include high blood pressure, thrombosis and thromboembolism involving the heart and lungs, but occur rarely in women without predisposing factors. To minimise side-effects doctors are advised to use the lowest effective dose and the use of oral contraceptives in those with significant predisposing factors for cardiovascular disease is discouraged.