Estimates of the risk of cardiovascular death attributable to low-dose oral contraceptives in the United States.Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1999 Jan; 180(1 Pt 1):241-9.AJ
Our purpose was to estimate the annual risk of death in the United States from cardiovascular disease attributable to low-dose combination oral contraceptives.
Estimates of the risk of death from cardiovascular disease attributable to low-dose oral contraceptives were modeled on data from studies published through 1997 and from age-specific mortality rates in the United States for 1993 and 1994.
Attributable risk of death from cardiovascular disease resulting from oral contraceptive use is 0.06 and 3.0 per 100,000 nonsmokers 15 to 34 years of age and 35 to 44 years of age, respectively. In smokers this risk increases, respectively, to 1.73 and 19.4 per 100,000 users in these 2 age groups; however, 97% and 85% of this risk is due to the combined effects of smoking and using oral contraceptives. The attributable risk of death from cardiovascular disease in nonsmoking oral contraceptive users is lower than the risk of death from pregnancy in nonusers of oral contraceptives at all ages; however, among smoking oral contraceptive users more than 35 years of age, the excess risk of death from oral contraceptives is higher than the risk of death from pregnancy.
There is virtually no excess attributable risk of death from cardiovascular disease related to oral contraceptive use in young women. However, smokers more than 35 years of age should use a nonestrogen contraceptive.