‘Sweetening the Pill’ Facebook shares stories of women who died from hormonal contraception

contraception, birth control

According to the Facebook page for “Sweetening the Pill: How We Got Hooked on Hormonal Birth Control,” a book by Holly Grigg-Spall which also boasts a documentary of the same name (see the trailer here), March is Blood Clot Awareness Month. Disturbing reports of the side effects of hormonal contraception — up to and even including death — have been circulating for quite some time. Blood clots are just one of many risks for women who use hormonal birth control. Documented risks include:

  • Depression/suicidal impulses
  • Blood clots/pulmonary embolism
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Breast cancer
  • Cervical cancer
  • Decreased bone density
  • Infertility

Alexandra Williams

Alexandra Williams, age 20, a perfectly healthy young woman, collapsed as she went to open the front door for a repairman. She was rushed to the hospital where she underwent surgery and was put on life support. Declared brain dead, her family had to make the painful decision to remove life support. Alex died from a pulmonary embolism brought on by hormonal birth control.

Julia West-Ross

Julia West-Ross, age 29, experienced tunnel vision as she left work and felt like she was coming down with the flu. The next day her symptoms were worse with nausea, rapid heartbeat, faintness, and difficulty breathing. Her doctor sent her to the ER where she was admitted to the ICU. Julia went into cardiac arrest due to pulmonary embolisms and died while using an estrogen-based birth control. 

Erika Langhart

Erika Langhart, age 24, was looking forward to law school when she collapsed at her apartment. Despite being rushed to a hospital, she died from massive pulmonary embolisms in her lungs while using an estrogen-based birth control.

Brittany Malone

Brittany Malone, age 23, was with her two sisters for a night on the town when she tragically collapsed and her sister had to perform CPR. At the hospital, they discovered a blood clot in her leg that led to massive bleeding in her lungs. Brittany never regained consciousness and died while using an estrogen-based birth control.

Alex Rowan

Alex Rowan, age 23, had recently graduated from college and was on top of the world with a job in her chosen field, her own apartment, and a boyfriend. She collapsed on the way out of her office. Despite the best efforts of doctors, she died five hours later from pulmonary embolisms from using an estrogen-based birth control.

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