Syeda

Use Syedra birth control pills to avoid pregnancy

Syeda is a type of combined contraceptive (birth control) medication that contains a lower dose of estrogen than standard pills. If you experience estrogen-related side effects such as headaches, nausea and breast tenderness, Syeda may be a good birth control pill to try.

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Information

Written by Dr Yasmin Aghajan, MD

Information last reviewed 07/27/19

About

What is Syeda?

Syeda is a prescription oral contraceptive pill. It comes in a pack which contains both active pills and “placebo”, or inactive pills. The placebos are inactive pills that help you to keep track of when to start your next pack after your period. Syeda also contains a lower-level of the estrogen hormone than standard pills, making you less likely to experience estrogen-related side effects such as nausea, headaches and breast tenderness. 

How does Syeda work?

Syeda contains synthetic versions of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. This means that it works in a  number of ways. Syeda prevents ovulation (the release of an egg by the ovary) by altering the body’s hormone secretion system; it also thickens the vaginal mucus, making it harder for sperm to get to an egg to fertilize. Lastly, Syeda helps to prevent a fertilized egg from implanting, by altering the lining of the uterus. 

How effective is Syeda?

When taken correctly, Syeda is up to 99% effective in preventing pregnancy (less than 1 pregnancy per 100 women per year).

Ingredients

Active ingredients

Only the yellow Syeda pills contain active ingredients. The white pills are placebo pills to help you keep track of when to start your next pack after your period. The yellow Syeda pills contain the following active ingredients:

  • 30mcg ethinyl estradiol (EE) - the synthetic estrogen

  • 3mg drospirenone - the synthetic progesterone.

Inactive ingredients

Both the yellow and white Syeda pills contain the following inactive ingredients:  corn starch, crospovidone (Polyplasdone XL), crosspovidone (Polyplasdone XL-10), lactose fast flo, macrogol/PEG 3350, magnesium stearate vegetable (kemilub em-f-v), polysorbate 80 (tween 80), polyvinyl alcohol-part. hydrolyzed, povidone k-30 (kollidon K-30), pregelatinized starch (sepistab ST200), talc and titanium dioxide. 

The yellow pills also contain a colourant called yellow iron oxide.  

Dosage

How to start Syeda

You should not be pregnant when starting Syeda. 

There are two different schedule options to start taking Syeda.

  • Schedule 1: Starting on a Sunday: Take the first dose on the first Sunday after the start of menstruation (if your period starts on Sunday, take the first table that very same day). You should use a back-up method of contraception such as a condom for the first 7 days after starting. 
  • Schedule 2: Day 1 starter: Start taking the first dose on the first day of menstruation. You should use a back-up method of contraception such as a condom for the first 7 days after starting. 

Keep track of when you start. Take one pill every day at the same time. Some people find it helpful to set an alarm on their phone. 

If you are switching from a different oral contraceptive to Syeda, you should start Syeda on the same day that a new pack of the previous oral contraceptive would have been. 

If you are switching from a transdermal patch, vaginal ring, or injection, you should start Syeda on the day the next dose would have been due.  If you are switching from the IUD or implant, you should start Syeda on the same day as removal.  If you are starting Syeda after childbirth (and are not breast-feeding), you should start at least 4 weeks after delivery. You should have a negative pregnancy test before starting, as lack of periods is not reliable, and use an additional method of contraception such as condoms for the first 7 days after starting Syeda.   

How to take Syeda

Take one pill a day, at the same time each day. Each packet contains 7 inactive pills,

What to do if you miss a pill

If you are late to take one dose (still within 24 hours of when you should have taken it), or if you missed one dose between 24-48 hours, take the dose as soon as possible. Continue the next dose at the usual time (even if it means 2 doses in the same day).

If you have missed two or more doses (>48 hours), take the most recently missed dose as soon as possible. Continue the next dose at the usual time (even if it means 2 doses in the same day). However, you should use back-up contraception such as condoms until you have taken the regular dosing schedule for 7 consecutive days. 

If the doses you missed were during the last week of the active tablets (days 15-21 of a 28-day pack), finish the current pack but skip the hormone free interval (inactive pills). Then, start a new pack. Use back-up contraception for 7 days.   

Side Effects

Syeda side effects

Common side effects of Syeda include:

  • Headaches

  • Nausea

  • Changes in your period

    • Irregular periods

    • Early periods

    • Periods lasting longer than expected

  • Breast tenderness or soreness

  • Bleeding between periods

 

Uncommon side effects of Syeda include:

  • Periods that are longer of heavier than normal

  • Vomiting (if you vomit after within 2 hours of taking the pill, you should take another one as soon as possible. If you vomit again, your birth control may not work and you should use additional forms of contraception for the next week.

  • Fatigue

  • Weakness

 

Please note, this is NOT a complete list of side effects. Other side effects are possible. You should always read the patient information leaflet before taking any medication and you should reread it every time you get a new pack in case the information has been updated.

 

If you experience any allergic symptoms of the symptoms of a blood clot, you should seek emergency medical attention. The symptoms of an allergic reaction include:

  • Difficulty breathing

  • Swelling of mouth, lips, tongue or throat

  • Hives

The symptoms of a blood clot can be varied and include the following:

  • Breathing problems

  • Pain in the chest, jaw or left arm

  • Fainting

  • Dizziness

  • Confusion

  • Slurred speech

  • Lack of coordination

  • Excessive sweating

  • Severe headaches or migraines

  • Visual changes including double vision, blindness and other impairments.

Contraindications

You should not take Syeda if you have a history of or have:

  • Adrenal insufficiency
  • Breast cancer or other estrogen or progestin sensitive cancer (currently or a history of)
  • Liver tumors (benign or malignant)
  • Are pregnant 
  • Kidney disease
  • Abnormal uterine bleeding that has not yet been evaluated and worked up
  • Use of Hepatitis C medications (ombitasvir/paritaprevir/ritonavir/dasabuvir)
  • Blood clots, including stroke, coronary artery disease, history of pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis, hypercoagulable states such as Factor V Leiden or other genetic predispositions to blood clots
  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Migraines with or without aura in women over 35
  • Women over 35 who smoke 
  • History of valvular disease of the heart

Drug interactions

Certain medications can interfere with the way Syeda works, meaning you are at risk of pregnancy. These include: 

  • Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers and Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitors (commonly used blood pressure medications)
  • Anticoagulants 
  • HIV medications 
  • Hepatitis C medications 
  • Chemotherapy drugs 
  • Anticonvulsant medications for epilepsy 
  • Clozapine (an antipsychotic) 
  • Corticosteroids 
  • Griseofulvin (an antifungal)
  • Modafinil (a treatment for narcolepsy)
  • Potassium sparing diuretics
  • The antibiotics Rifabutin and Rifampin 
  • Ropinirole (for Parkinson’s disease)
  • An MAO Inhibitor called Selegiline
  • Theophylline derivatives
  • Tizanidine for muscle spasms 
  • Ursodiol (to dissolve gallstones)
  • Warfarin (a blood thinner)
  • St. John’s wort

Treatment Options

Alternatives to Syeda

There are many options for contraception, including hormonal methods (patch, pill, ring, implant, IUD) vs. non-hormonal treatments (copper-IUD, barrier methods, spermicide). There are other hormonal birth control pills like Syeda. Discuss with your doctor your preferences, health conditions and the risks and benefits of each type of contraception. 

Q&A

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. You and your physician will determine if and how you should take any medication prescribed to you following a medical consultation.

  1. Syeda (drospirenone/ethinyl estradiol) [prescribing information]. Princeton, NJ: Sandoz Inc; January 2016.

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