Yaz and Yasmin are two brand names for a contraceptive composed of drospirenone (a progestrone) and ethinyl estradiol (an estrogen). Both Yaz and Yasmin are oral contraceptive pills.  They are used by women for birth control. This combination of drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol stops ovulation, that is release of an egg from an ovary in a woman. It also thickens the uterus and cervical lining, causing difficulty in fertilization. Hence it helps in preventing pregnancy.

Yaz and Yasmin are used for other purposes as well. They can be used to treat mild acne in adult women. Yaz and Yasmin can also be used to treat Pre-Menstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) symptoms. These symptoms most frequently include anxiety, depression, irritability, lack of concentration, and lack of energy. Sleep or appetite changes, tenderness in breast, joint or muscle pain, headache, and weight gain are other symptoms of PMDD.

Yaz and Yasmin can lead to birth defects in an unborn baby, if taken by a pregnant woman. Hence it is advisable to not use Yaz or Yasmin in pregnancy. A woman should avoid taking Yaz or Yasmin if she has a history of stroke or blood clots, circulation problems or a heart valve disorder. Breast or uterine cancer, abnormal vaginal bleeding, kidney or liver disease, and adrenal gland disorder are other conditions that might dictate that the use of Yaz or Yasmin should be avoided. One should not take Yaz or Yasmin if one has severe high blood pressure, migraine headaches, or a history of jaundice caused by birth control pills.

Uses of Yaz and Yasmin

Both Yaz and Yasmin are used as contraceptive pills, and they are also used to treat mild acne and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. They are both manufactured by Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals. The primary difference between the two drugs is that the standard prescription of Yaz contains 24 active pills and 4 pills with no active ingredients. Prescriptions of Yasmin (like most other birth control pills) has 21 active pills and 7 pills with no active ingredients.

  • Yaz and Yasmin are used to treat endometriosis. In this disease there is growth of cells outside the uterus. The cells that grow within a woman’s uterus also start growing on the outer wall of uterus and can spread in whole pelvic region. Yaz or Yasmin is used to treat this condition by stabilizing hormones in a woman’s body.
  • Every woman experiences menopause or stoppage of menstrual cycle at the age of 40-50. Before menopause a woman’s body can take two to eight years to prepare for it. This condition is called perimenopause. In this period estrogen level fluctuates and this leads to highly irregular menstrual cycle. Both Yaz and Yasmin are used to treat this condition by regulating menstrual cycle.
  • Yaz and Yasmin were approved for moderate acne treatment in adult women in 2007 by the FDA. Sometimes acne is developed due to hormonal disturbances. In that case, Yaz or Yasmin is used to treat mild or moderate acne by stabilizing hormone secretion in the body.
  • Yaz and Yasmin are also used to treat premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), which is similar to the more widely known premenstrual syndrome (PMS). PMDD can cause depression, migraine or other such conditions. Yaz and Yasmin are used to treat this condition, as these symptoms occur due to disturbed balance of hormones and Yaz/Yasmin stabilizes hormones in the body.

Women can experience nausea, vomiting, headaches or weight gain after taking Yaz or Yasmin. It is quite normal side effect of any birth control pill.

Precautions before taking Yaz or Yasmin

Some women may be allergic to drospirenone, and they should not take Yaz or Yasmin. One should not take Yaz or Yasmin if one has uncontrolled high blood pressure, migraine headaches, or a heart valve disorder.  In case of a history of stroke, blood clot, or circulation problems of diabetes, kidney or liver disease, adrenal gland disorder or unusual vaginal bleeding, both Yaz and Yasmin should be avoided, as medical literature indicates the drugs can worsen these condition. Women should also avoid Yaz and Yasmin if they have any type of breast, uterine, or hormone-dependent cancer or a history of jaundice caused by birth control pills.

One should consult a doctor first before taking Yaz or Yasmin if following conditions persist.

  • If you have high blood pressure or heart disease;
  • If you have high cholesterol level
  • If you are overweight;
  • If you are suffering from liver cancer;
  • If you have got any type of gallbladder disease;
  • If you are a diabetic patient
  • If you have suffered seizures or epilepsy
  • If you have a history of depression, irregular menstrual cycles, or history of breast or uterine cancer.

FDA has put both Yaz and Yasmin in pregnancy category X. it can cause severe birth defects in an unborn baby, if taken during pregnancy. It is advisable to consult a doctor, if a woman gets pregnant while taking Yaz or Yasmin. It is also advisable to not use Yaz/Yasmin while you are breast-feeding. It can harm infants, as it can be passed to them through mother’s milk. Drospirenone may raise potassium levels in your blood. You should also consult a doctor, if you experience any problem related to liver, kidney, or stomach while using Yaz or Yasmin.