Oral and transdermal hormonal contraception in women after kidney transplantation

Transplant Proc. 2007 Nov;39(9):2759-62. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2007.09.014.


Aim: The aim of the study was to assess the safety of low-dose oral or transdermal hormonal contraception in kidney recipients.

Materials and methods: Twenty-six kidney recipients, aged 18 to 44 years (mean, 31.0) took low-dose contraceptive pills, and 10 kidney recipients, aged 22 to 36 years (mean, 31.4) used transdermal contraceptive systems. Contraception was administered for a period not shorter than 18 months. At the onset of therapy all patients showed stable graft function. The main indication for therapy was effective contraception. Additional indications were mild ovarian cysts and irregular or profuse menstruations. The pills consisted of 20 to 35 microg of etinyl estradiol and generation III progestogen. The contraceptive patch released 20 microg of etinyl estradiol and 150 microg of norelgesromin daily.

Results: No case of pregnancy was noted. Oral contraception was discontinued in two cases, in one case due to profound thrombophlebitis of the lower extremity and in the other case deterioration of liver function. No other side effects or symptoms of intolerance were reported. Hormonal contraception did not significantly influence body mass index, mean blood pressure, serum creatinine, or other biochemical parameters.

Conclusion: Despite the presence of relative contraindications, mainly arterial hypertension and impaired liver function, hormonal contraception should be considered in female kidney recipients to be a highly effective contraceptive method that additionally regulates menstrual bleeding, protects from development of mild ovarian cysts and seems to positively influence women's well-being. The transdermal mode of administration may diminish the chance for drug interactions and therefore be safer for patients.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Cutaneous
  • Administration, Oral
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bilirubin / blood
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female / administration & dosage*
  • Creatinine / metabolism
  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Drug Combinations
  • Ethinyl Estradiol / administration & dosage
  • Female
  • Fertility / physiology
  • Hematocrit
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation / physiology*
  • Norgestrel / administration & dosage
  • Norgestrel / analogs & derivatives
  • Oximes / administration & dosage


  • Contraceptive Agents, Female
  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Drug Combinations
  • Oximes
  • Norgestrel
  • Ethinyl Estradiol
  • Creatinine
  • norelgestromin
  • Bilirubin