Cycle control with an extended-regimen oral contraceptive combining levonorgestrel and ethinyl estradiol that includes continuous low-dose ethinyl estradiol instead of the traditional hormone-free interval
Authors Nappi RE, Lobo Abascal P, Hsieh J, Micheletti M
Received 18 May 2017
Accepted for publication 5 September 2017
Published 5 October 2017 Volume 2017:9 Pages 739—747
Checked for plagiarism Yes
Review by Single-blind
Peer reviewer comments 2
Editor who approved publication: Professor Elie Al-Chaer
Rossella E Nappi,1 Paloma Lobo Abascal,2 Jennifer Hsieh,3 Marie-Christine Micheletti4
1Research Center for Reproductive Medicine, Gynecological Endocrinology and Menopause, IRCCS San Matteo Foundation, Department of Clinical, Surgical, Diagnostic and Pediatric Sciences, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy; 2Hospital Universitario Infanta Sofía, San Sebastián de los Reyes, Madrid, Spain; 3Teva Branded Pharmaceutical Products R&D, Inc., Malvern, PA, USA; 4Teva Europe Women’s Health Medical Affairs, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Purpose: To evaluate scheduled and unscheduled bleeding and spotting over 1 year of treatment with 91-day extended-regimen combined oral contraception (COC) providing continuous low-dose ethinyl estradiol (EE) in place of the traditional 7-day hormone-free interval (HFI).
Patients and methods: This post hoc analysis of a multicenter, open-label, 1-year, Phase 3 study of extended-regimen COC with 30 µg EE/150 µg levonorgestrel (LNG) for 84 days and EE 10 µg for 7 days included 799 sexually active, adult women who completed at least one 91-day cycle of therapy. Subjects recorded bleeding and spotting episodes daily using electronic diaries. Logistic regression analyses are reported as ORs with 95% CIs.
Results: There was a 10% increase (OR =1.102; 95% CI: 1.006–1.206) in the likelihood of reporting no scheduled bleeding for each additional 91-day cycle completed. From the third 91-day cycle, more than one fifth of women reported no scheduled bleeding (third cycle =23% [121/533]; fourth cycle =22% [97/446]). Among women who reported no scheduled bleeding at Cycle 1 (136/758 [18%]), ≥45% showed sustained lack of scheduled bleeding in later cycles. There were increases of 53% (OR =1.531; 95% CI: 1.393–1.683) and 31% (OR =1.307; 95% CI: 1.205–1.418) in the likelihood of reporting 0 to ≤6 days vs >6 days of unscheduled bleeding and spotting, respectively, for each additional 91-day cycle. By Cycle 2, more than 80% of women reported no unscheduled bleeding or ≤6 days of unscheduled bleeding during each 91-day cycle.
Conclusion: Improved cycle control with decreased bleeding over time was shown during extended-regimen COC with 30 µg EE/150 µg LNG for 84 days and continuous low-dose EE instead of the traditional 7-day HFI. Women considering this regimen should be informed that those who complete at least one 91-day COC cycle will likely experience less bleeding/spotting in future cycles.
Keywords: combined oral contraception, menstrual cycle, 91-day cycle, extended-regimen COC
This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.Download Article [PDF] View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]