Hormonal contraception and depression

You may have seen recent news reports regarding a link between depression and the use of hormonal contraception. The FSRH have released a useful statement outlining their opinion of the link between depression and the use of hormonal contraception.

Basically a recent observational study from Denmark suggested an association between the use of any hormonal contraception and a first prescription of antidepressants or a first diagnosis of depression. They excluded women with a previous history of mental illness. There is no causation proved from this study.

The FSRH advises that there have been several previous studies looking at this. Some have found more depression among women using hormonal contraception, some have found no link and others have found a protective effect.

So the FSRH suggest that we give women the following advice:

  • Eloine
  • However it is recognised that some women will experience mood changes.
  • Experience suggests that women who have had mood changes with one form of hormonal contraception, may be fine with a different form of hormonal contraception.

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