Alesse-28 drug interactions

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]

List of drug interactions

Changes in contraceptive effectiveness associated with coadministration of other products


Increase in plasma levels associated with co-administered drugs

Changes in plasma levels of co-administered drugs

Interactions with laboratory tests



Changes in contraceptive effectiveness associated with coadministration of other products

Antibiotics/anticonvulsants/drugs that increase metabolism of contraceptive steroids

Contraceptive effectiveness may be reduced when hormonal contraceptives are coadministered with antibiotics, anticonvulsants, and other drugs that increase the metabolism of contraceptive steroids. This could result in unintended pregnancy or breakthrough bleeding. Examples include rifampin, rifabutin, barbiturates, primidone, phenylbutazone, phenytoin, dexamethasone, carbamazepine, felbamate, oxcarbazepine, topiramate, griseofulvin, and modafinil. In such cases a back-up nonhormonal method of birth control should be considered. Return to top

Ampicillin/tetracyclines/other penicillins

Several cases of contraceptive failure and breakthrough bleeding have been reported in the literature with concomitant administration of antibiotics such as ampicillin and other penicillins, and tetracyclines. However, clinical pharmacology studies investigating drug interactions between combined oral contraceptives and these antibiotics have reported inconsistent results. Return to top

Anti-HIV protease inhibitors

Several of the anti-HIV protease inhibitors have been studied with co-administration of oral combination hormonal contraceptives; significant changes (increase and decrease) in the plasma levels of the estrogen and progestin have been noted in some cases. The safety and efficacy of oral contraceptive products may be affected with coadministration of anti-HIV protease inhibitors. Healthcare providers should refer to the label of the individual anti-HIV protease inhibitors for further drug-drug interaction information. Return to top

St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)

Herbal products containing St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum) may induce hepatic enzymes (cytochrome P 450) and p-glycoprotein transporter and may reduce the effectiveness of contraceptive steroids. This may also result in breakthrough bleeding. Return to top

Increase in plasma levels associated with co-administered drugs

Co-administration of atorvastatin and certain oral contraceptives containing ethinyl estradiol increases AUC values for ethinyl estradiol by approximately 20%. Ascorbic acid and acetaminophen increase the bioavailability of ethinyl estradiol since these drugs act as competitive inhibitors for sulfation of ethinyl estradiol in the gastrointestinal wall, a known pathway of elimination for ethinyl estradiol. CYP 3A4 inhibitors such as indinavir, itraconazole, ketoconazole, fluconazole, and troleandomycin may increase plasma hormone levels. Troleandomycin may also increase the risk of intrahepatic cholestasis during coadministration with combination oral contraceptives. Return to top

Changes in plasma levels of co-administered drugs

Combination hormonal contraceptives containing some synthetic estrogens (eg, ethinyl estradiol) may inhibit the metabolism of other compounds. Increased plasma concentrations of cyclosporin, prednisolone and other corticosteroids, and theophylline have been reported with concomitant administration of oral contraceptives. Decreased plasma concentrations of acetaminophen and increased clearance of temazepam, salicylic acid, morphine, and clofibric acid, due to induction of conjugation (particularly glucuronidation), have been noted when these drugs were administered with oral contraceptives. Return to top

Interactions with laboratory tests

Certain endocrine- and liver-function tests and blood components may be affected by oral contraceptives:

  • Increased prothrombin and factors VII, VIII, IX, and X; decreased antithrombin 3; increased norepinephrine-induced platelet aggregability.
  • Increased thyroid-binding globulin (TBG) leading to increased circulating total thyroid hormone, as measured by protein-bound iodine (PBI), T4 by column or by radioimmunoassay. Free T3 resin uptake is decreased, reflecting the elevated TBG; free T4 concentration is unaltered.
  • Other binding proteins may be elevated in serum i.e., corticosteroid binding globulin (CBG), sex hormone-binding globulins (SHBG) leading to increased levels of total circulating corticosteroids and sex steroids respectively. Free or biologically active hormone concentrations are unchanged.
  • Triglycerides may be increased and levels of various other lipids and lipoproteins may be affected.
  • Glucose tolerance may be decreased.
  • Serum folate levels may be depressed by oral-contraceptive therapy. This may be of clinical significance if a woman becomes pregnant shortly after discontinuing oral contraceptives.

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Complete List of Alesse-28 Drug Interactions

Alesse-28 is a multi-ingredient drug consisting of:

Ethinyl estradiol Drug Interactions

Major Interactions

Moderate Interactions

Minor Interactions

Levonorgestrel Drug Interactions

Major Interactions

Moderate Interactions

Minor Interactions



Adapted from the FDA Package Insert.


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