WASHINGTON, November 17, 2003 ( – On Friday, the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved Ovcon 35, an oral, spearmint-flavoured contraceptive tablet that can be chewed and swallowed.  Ovcon 35 contains a progestin (norethindrone) and an estrogen (ethinyl estradiol) found in products that are already marketed, and thus carries the same dangerous side-effects as other birth control pills including an increased risk of blood clots, heart attack, and stroke.  Like other oral contraceptives Ovcon 35 is abortifacient when there is a ‘breakthrough’ ovulation.  The directions for use tell women that the pill may be swallowed whole or chewed and swallowed. If the pill is chewed and then swallowed, the woman should drink a full glass (8 ounces) of liquid immediately afterwards so that the full dose of medication reaches the stomach and no residue is left in the mouth.  The product is manufactured by Bristol Myers Squibb Company, Princeton, N.J., and will be marketed by Warner Chilcott, Inc., Rockaway, N.J.  Gillian Long, the Youth Director of Campaign Life Coalition objected strenuously to the new drug since the new chewable versions are obviously aimed at youth the same way chewable multi-vitamins are geared to increase the likelihood of ingestion of vitamins by children. Long told, “This is shocking.  We know that estrogen, the active ingredient in oral contraceptives, causes breast and cervical cancer, as well as blood clots, weight gain and a host of other side effects and complications.  And here we are, marketing it to young girls and handing it out as though it were, literally, candy.  It may prove to be the most dangerous candy ever.”  See the FDA release on the pill:


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