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There are many forms of contraceptive methods available to women, some more risky than others. NuvaRing has proven to be one of the most popular alternatives to oral contraceptives, but it is not without side effects.

What is Nuvaring?

NuvaRing birth control was approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in 2001. It is now one of the most popular birth control contraceptive devices on the market, and is used by more than 1 million women throughout the U.S.

NuvaRing is a flexible ring that is inserted into the vagina once a month. It is kept in place for three weeks, and prevents pregnancy by releasing controlled amounts of ethinyl estradiol, and etonogestrel into the bloodstream. Etonogestrel is a third-generation progestin. Studies have linked third-generation progestin contraceptives to a higher risk of venous thrombosis blood clots, and strokes compared to other forms of hormonal birth control.

Nuvaring Lawsuit Allegations

NuvaRing plaintiffs allege that Merck & Co. (formerly Schering-Plough, and Organon) has failed to adequately warn about the increase risk of NuvaRing blood clots. Merck's advertising have led many women to believe that NuvaRing is as safe as birth control pills. According to NuvaRing allegations, the female hormones in NuvaRing are absorbed directly into the blood stream, and patients receive a much higher dose leading to blood clot side effects.

What is the Problem with Nuvaring?

In June, 2012, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study finding vaginal ring contraceptives could lead to a 2.5 to 3-fold increased risk of blood clots. Blood clots can cause stroke, DVT and pulmonary embolism.

The FDA has received nearly 5,500 adverse event reports of complications among women using NuvaRing devices. Most common were 1,177 reports of pulmonary embolism and 806 reports of deep vein thrombosis, with hospitalization resulting in over 30% of cases.

More than 1,000 women have filed a NuvaRing lawsuit, with many of these consolidated in federal court in Missouri, In re: NuvaRing Products Liability Litigation, No. 08-md-1964, JPML, Eastern District Missouri. There are about 200 complaints pending in the New Jersey state court system, where the cases have been centralized for coordinated management in the Superior Court of New Jersey in Bergen County.

The first bellwether trial is set for May 6 in New Jersey and in the federal NuvaRing MDL, a series of early trial dates are currently scheduled to begin on July 8, 2013.

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