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Systematic (IUPAC) name
13-ethyl-17-ethynyl- 11-methylidene- 1,2,3,6,7,8,9,10,12,13,14,15, 16,17- tetradecahydrocyclopenta[a] phenanthren-17-ol
CAS number 54024-22-5
ATC code G03AC09
PubChem 40973
DrugBank APRD00762
Chemical data
Formula C22H30O 
Mol. mass 310.473 g/mol
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability  ?
Protein binding 98.3%
Metabolism  ?
Half life  ?
Excretion  ?
Therapeutic considerations
Pregnancy cat.


Legal status
Routes  ?

Desogestrel is a molecule used in hormonal contraceptives.


In February of 2007, the consumer adovcacy group Public Citizen released a petition requesting that the FDA ban oral contraceptives containing desogestrel, citing studies going as far back as 1995 that suggest the risk of dangerous blood clots is doubled for women on such pills in comparison to other oral contraceptives.

Most combined oral contraceptive pills (COCPs, or simply OCs) on the market today contain both an estrogen compound (ethinyl estradiol is common) plus a progestin (a progesterone-like compound) such as desogestrel.

As such, desogestrel-containing birth control pills are sometimes referred to as "third generation" oral contraceptives. Drugs cited specifically in the petition include Apri-28, Cyclessa, Desogen, Kariva, Mircette, Ortho-Cept, Reclipsen, Velivet and some generic pills. Birth control pills that are considered "second generation" (Ortho Tri-Cyclen, for example) contain an estrogen and a progestin, but the progestin is different, such as levonorgestrel.

The dispute is whether third generation OCs are less safe than the second generations OCs, which are considered the current "gold standard" in terms of oral contraceptive safety.

See also


  • Public Citizen’s Health Research Group: Petition to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to Ban Third Generation Oral Contraceptives Containing Desogestrel due to Increased Risk of Venous Thrombosis HRG Publication #1799, 2007
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Desogestrel". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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