Table 1 Contraindications for combined oral contraceptives

From: Hypertension in women

Smoking in women >35 years of age
 <15 cigarettes per day Risk>benefit
 >15 cigarettes per day Risk unacceptable
 History of hypertension, current BP unknown Risk>benefit
 Adequately controlled hypertension Risk>benefit
Elevated BP levels (mm Hg)
 Systolic 140–159 or diastolic 90–99 Risk>benefit
 Systolic >160 or diastolic >100 Risk unacceptable
Vascular disease Risk unacceptable
Multiple risk factors for cardiovascular disease (older age, smoking, diabetes and hypertension) Risk>benefit: may be unacceptable
 History of or current DVT/PE Risk unacceptable
 Major surgery with prolonged immobilization Risk unacceptable
Known thrombogenic mutations (for example, factor V Leiden; prothrombin mutation; protein S, protein C, and antithrombin deficiencies) Risk unacceptable
Ischemic heart disease Risk unacceptable
Stroke Risk unacceptable
 Without aura in women >35 years of age Risk>benefit
 With aura in women at any age Risk unacceptable
 Nephropathy/retinopathy/neuropathy Risk>benefit/risk unacceptable
 Other vascular disease or diabetes of >20 years duration Risk>benefit/risk unacceptable
  1. Abbreviations: BP, blood pressure; DVT, deep venous thrombosis; PE, pulmonary embolism.