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Gianvi contains synthetic estrogen, which can increase the levels of fatty molecules in the bloodstream, leading to pancreatitis. If you are one of thousands of women who have suffered a Gianvi side effect, you have probably faced expensive medical tests, physical pain, emotional anguish, lost income, and other serious injuries.

Overview

Gianvi is a new type of once-daily contraceptive, approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2010 for the prevention of pregnancy. It was created by a joint effort of Bayer (the manufacturer of Yaz) and Teva Pharmaceuticals. Gianvi is the generic form of Yaz. Both medications contain the same active ingredients, and are approved to prevent pregnancy, reduce the symptoms of mild acne, and treat Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD). Gianvi belongs to the “fourth generation” or oral contraceptives, a group defined by a new ingredient: drospirenone, a synthetic form of the female reproductive hormone progestin. Gianvi also contains synthetic estrogen, in the form of ethinyl estradiol.

The daily Gianvi regimen consists of 24 “active” tablets containing 0.3-mg of drospirenone and 0.02-mg of ethinyl estradiol. Gianvi also contains several “inactive” tablets, which contain no drugs but help a woman stay in the habit of taking the pill at the same time every day. If taken correctly, Gianvi is more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

Unfortunately, there is growing evidence linking Gianvi to a variety of severe side effects. Drospirenone has been linked to an increased risk of blood clots, stroke, heart attack, and death. Synthetic estrogen has been linked to an increased risk of pancreatitis, gallbladder disease, and kidney damage.

Gianvi and Pancreatitis

Many experts believe that the synthetic estrogen in Gianvi increases the level of triglycerides in the bloodstream. Triglycerides are fatty molecules, and elevated triglyceride levels are the third most common cause of pancreatitis (alcohol and gallstones are the first and second most common causes of pancreatitis).

On the safety labeling for Gianvi, under Warnings and Precautions, there is a warning that women with lipid disorders may have an even higher risk of suffering from pancreatitis. In a condition called hyperlipidemia, a person has chronically elevated levels of lipids, a type of fatty molecule. Because estrogen-containing medications such as Gianvi can increase these fatty molecules even more, Gianvi could make it very difficult to control a lipid disorder, which could contribute to the development of pancreatitis.

What is Pancreatitis?

Pancreatitis is an inflammatory disease of the pancreas. The pancreas is an internal organ located near the stomach, which secretes enzymes that the stomach uses to digest food. The pancreas is also responsible for secreting hormones called insulin and glucagon, which are used by the body to control blood-sugar levels. Pancreatitis that permanently damages the pancreas can cause diabetes, a lifelong metabolic disorder characterized by poor blood sugar control.

Pancreatitis can be acute, when a person has a sudden inflammation of the pancreas. It can also be chronic, when the pancreas becomes inflamed, does not heal, worsens with time, and causes the pancreas to become permanently damaged.

If pancreatitis progresses, it can cause severe internal bleeding, life-threatening infections, and damage to the pancreas that is irreparable.

Symptoms of Pancreatitis

If you experience any of these symptoms, you may have a serious medical condition. Seek emergency attention immediately. Do not wait.

  • Abdominal pain
  • Chills
  • Clammy skin
  • Fatty stools
  • Fever
  • Mild jaundice
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Weakness
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting

Over time, pancreatitis can cause kidney failure. If a person suffers this complication, they will need surgery to remove the failed kidney and they may require a kidney transplant.

The Gianvi lawyers at The Clark Firm, LLP are concerned that thousands of women may have developed pancreatitis as a result of their birth control pills. Treating this condition is often extremely expensive, stressful, emotionally exhausting, and physically painful. Expensive medical tests for pancreatitis frequently include abdominal ultrasounds, MRIs, CT scans, blood tests, urine tests, fecal fat tests, and more. A woman with pancreatitis may also miss work and lose income while treating her condition.