The contraceptive pill Diane-35 is under review in Australia, primarily because of its link to blood clots.
With the same active ingredients as nine other brands including Dermapil, Estelle-35 ED, Juliet-35 ED, Brenda-35 ED, Chelsea-35 ED, Jene-35 ED, Carolyn-35 ED, Katie-35 ED and Laila-35 ED, the drug was temporarily pulled off shelves in France after being linked to four deaths, and has never been approved for use in the United States.
Existing guidelines clearly state that Diane-35 should not be prescribed as purely a contraceptive pill.
What many women do not know, is that the drug is specifically intended to treat severe acne and the excessive hair condition hirsutism, otherwise known as hyper-androgenisation.
“Use of Diane-35 as an oral contraceptive in women without signs and symptoms of hyper-androgenisation is not recommended,” a spokesperson for the The Therapeutic Good Administration told ABC Hack in a statement.
Yet, in practice, the drug is being prescribed to many women outside of the recommended guidelines, putting consumers unnecessarily at risk.
Here’s what you need to know.
What happened to Elanor Hill?
Elanor Hill, daughter of Labor MP Julian Hill, told Mamamia that while travelling in early 2017, she noticed an unusual ache in her leg.
Over a two week period, the dull pain intensified to throbbing, and an excruciating shooting sensation that was making it near impossible to walk.
Elanor told Mamamia: “The only way I can describe it is that I felt funny, really off. I didn’t feel like I could concentrate and I definitely didn’t feel well. I couldn’t put any pressure on it.