Microgestin and marijuana

Patient

Q: Hi, I start Microgestin FE 1 20 on Sunday. I was told by my pharmacist that I can't smoke while on the pill because of the risk of heart attack, stroke, and blood clots. I am seventeen, and have never smoked cigarettes, but once I'm out of school on summer break I smoke marijuana 3-5 times a week (while school is in session I only smoke it 2 or 3 times a month). My question is am I allowed to smoke marijuana while on this pill?

Doctor

A:   Thank you for your question. Microgestin FE 1/20 is an oral contraceptive medication containing norethindrone/ethinyl estradiol. Smoking tobacco while on this type of oral contraceptive can increase the risk of blood clots, strokes, and cardiac arrest. However, there is very little evidence on the adverse affect of smoking marijuana while on oral contraceptives. As a result we generally advise against doing so to ere on the side of caution. Inhaling any combusting substance such as tobacco or marijuana smoke can cause damage to the lungs which can lead to chronic lung diseases, so it is important to consider quitting to prevent this from occurring.

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