Effects of ethinyl estradiol and ibuprofen compared to placebo on endometrial bleeding, cervical mucus and the postcoital test in levonorgestrel subcutaneous implant users

Contraception. 2008 Aug;78(2):106-12. doi: 10.1016/j.contraception.2008.04.003. Epub 2008 Jun 9.


Background: The study was conducted to evaluate ethinyl estradiol (EE) or ibuprofen (IBU) compared to placebo (PL) on spotting and bleeding (S/B) and a postcoital test (PCT) in women using the levonorgestrel subcutaneous implant. Women experiencing excessive S/B were enrolled in a multicenter prospective randomized study using EE, IBU or PL.

Outcome measures: Duration of S/B and a PCT were evaluated. Statistical analysis used a general linear model procedure with Duncan's multiple range tests for individual variables.

Results: One hundred seven women were evaluated, and there was no difference in the duration of bleeding among the three therapies, while the mean number of spotting days were 1.8 for EE and 2.8 for PL (p=.04). There was no effect of IBU on S/B. No effect on cervical mucus or sperm was found between treatments.

Conclusion: There was a decrease in spotting but no effect on bleeding with EE compared to PL.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics / therapeutic use*
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female / adverse effects
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Implants / adverse effects
  • Estrogens / therapeutic use*
  • Ethinyl Estradiol / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ibuprofen / therapeutic use*
  • Levonorgestrel / adverse effects
  • Metrorrhagia / chemically induced
  • Metrorrhagia / drug therapy*
  • Placebos / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Analgesics
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female
  • Drug Implants
  • Estrogens
  • Placebos
  • Ethinyl Estradiol
  • Levonorgestrel
  • Ibuprofen