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Cryselle Side Effects

Generic Name: ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel

Note: This document contains side effect information about ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Cryselle.

For the Consumer

Applies to ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel: oral tablet

Along with its needed effects, ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel:

Incidence not known
  • Absent, missed, or irregular menstrual periods
  • backache
  • belching
  • bleeding between periods
  • blurred vision
  • breast tenderness, pain, enlargement, or secretion
  • change in the amount of bleeding during periods
  • change in the pattern of monthly periods
  • changes in skin color, pain, tenderness, swelling of the foot or leg
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • chills
  • clay-colored stools
  • clear or bloody discharge from the nipple
  • cough
  • dark urine
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty swallowing
  • dimpling of the breast skin
  • dizziness
  • dull ache or feeling of pressure or heaviness in the legs
  • fast heartbeat
  • fever
  • full or bloated feeling or pressure in the stomach
  • headache
  • headache, severe and throbbing
  • heartburn
  • hives
  • inability to speak
  • indigestion
  • inverted nipple
  • itching of the vagina or genital area
  • itching skin near damaged veins
  • light vaginal bleeding between periods and after intercourse
  • loss of appetite
  • lump in the breast or under the arm
  • nausea and vomiting
  • nervousness
  • pain during sexual intercourse
  • pain or discomfort in the arms, jaw, back or neck
  • persistent crusting or scaling of the nipple
  • pounding in the ears puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • redness or swelling of the breast
  • seizures
  • severe or sudden headache
  • slow or fast heartbeat
  • slurred speech
  • sore on the skin of the breast that does not heal
  • stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  • stopping of menstrual bleeding
  • sweating
  • swelling, pain, or tenderness in the upper abdominal area
  • swollen feet and ankles
  • temporary blindness
  • thick, white vaginal discharge with no odor or with a mild odor
  • tightness in the chest
  • twitching, uncontrolled movements of the tongue, lips, face, arms, or legs
  • unpleasant breath odor
  • unusual stopping of menstrual bleeding
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vomiting of blood
  • weakness in the arm or leg on one side of the body, sudden and severe
  • yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects of ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Incidence not known
  • Acne
  • changes in weight or appetite
  • decreased interest in sexual intercourse
  • inability to have or keep an erection
  • increased hair growth, especially on the face
  • intolerance to contact lenses
  • loss in sexual ability, desire, drive, or performance
  • loss of hair on the scalp

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to ethinyl estradiol / norgestrel: oral tablet


The frequency of the reported side effects is unknown, however, an increased risk of the following side effects has been associated with the use of oral contraceptives: thrombophlebitis, arterial thromboembolism, pulmonary embolism, myocardial infarction, cerebral hemorrhage, cerebral thrombosis, hypertension, gallbladder disease, hepatic adenomas, carcinomas, or benign liver tumors.[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Breakthrough bleeding, spotting, menstrual flow changed, amenorrhea, cervical erosion change, cervical secretion change, decreased lactation, vaginal candidiasis, premenstrual syndrome, cystitis-like syndrome, vaginitis, dysmenorrhea[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Mesenteric thrombosis, nausea, vomiting, gastrointestinal symptoms, abdominal cramps, bloating, colitis, pancreatitis[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Hepatic adenoma, hepatic carcinoma, benign liver tumor, breast carcinoma, carcinoma of reproductive organs[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Thrombophlebitis, arterial thromboembolism, myocardial infarction, hypertension, cerebral-vascular disease with mitral valve prolapse, venous thrombosis, varicose veins aggravated[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Hemolytic uremic syndrome, sickle-cell disease, hemolytic uremic syndrome[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Temporary infertility following discontinuation, breast tenderness, breast enlargement, breast secretion[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Gallbladder disease, cholestatic jaundice, Budd-Chiari syndrome[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Depression, nervousness, libido changed, mood changed[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Anaphylactic/anaphylactoid reactions[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Edema/fluid retention, weight increased, weight decreased, reduced tolerance to carbohydrates, corneal curvature steepening, contact lens intolerance, congenital anomaly, porphyria, serum folate decreased[Ref]

Nervous system

Frequency not reported: Cerebral hemorrhage, cerebral thrombosis, migraine, headache, dizziness, exacerbation of chorea[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Retinal thrombosis, cataracts, optic neuritis[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Lupus-like syndrome[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Appetite changed, glucose tolerance decreased, serum folate depressed[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Pulmonary embolism[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Renal function impaired[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Melasma, allergic rash, hirsutism, loss of scalp hair, erythema multiforme, erythema nodosum, hemorrhagic eruption, acne, urticaria, angioedema[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Cryselle 28 (ethinyl estradiol-norgestrel)." Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc, Pomona, NY.

2. "Product Information. Ogestrel-28 (ethinyl estradiol-norgestrel)." Watson Pharmaceuticals, Parsippany, NJ.

3. "Product Information. Low-Ogestrel (ethinyl estradiol-norgestrel)." Mayne Pharma Inc, Paramus, NJ.

4. "Product Information. Elinest (ethinyl estradiol-norgestrel)." Northstar Rx LLC, Memphis, TN.

Some side effects of Cryselle may not be reported. Always consult your doctor or healthcare specialist for medical advice. You may also report side effects to the FDA.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.