No More Breakthrough Bleeding? FDA Approves Quartette, A New Form Of Birth Control Pill

quartette

There’s good news, ladies: A new type of birth control pill has been approved by the FDA! Quartette has a combination of levonorgestrel/ethinyl estradiol and ethinyl estradiol and can help prevent breakthrough bleeding.

According to Dr. James A. Simon, clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the George Washington University School of Medicine:

“Breakthrough bleeding can be experienced with any birth control pill, especially during the first few months, and is one of the reasons a large number of women discontinue extended regimens. The estrogen in Quartette increases at specific points and provides four short light periods a year. Breakthrough bleeding decreases over time, which might help encourage patient adherence.”

Approval for the new drug came after a clinical trial in which Quartette was found to be 97% effective at preventing pregnancy. It works differently than most 30-day birth control pills: Quartette features a 91-day oral regimen, in which the dose of estrogen increases at three set point points over the first 84 days, while the amount of progestin remains the same. This is then is followed by seven days of 10 micrograms of ethinyl estradiol.

I’m in favor of any and all options that give a woman greater choice to prevent pregnancy. Many woman have problems with hormonal birth control, so perhaps Quartette might be a good option for women that have tried other pill regimens that didn’t work for their body or lifestyle. Breakthrough bleeding is a really common complaint, so if Quartette can prevent that for some pill-users, it really sounds like a great development for women.

Photo: Shutterstock

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    • Eileen

      Maybe I’m a baby, but I’m scared of any birth control option that doesn’t let me have a period once a month. That’s my assurance that I’m not pregnant! (And yes I know how hormonal birth control works and that even when you get a period it’s not really a period etc…but still)

    • bluegirlredstate

      I started Quartette last week and breakthrough bleeding has already begun, earlier than when I was on my old brand of pill. Huge disappointment. To anyone dealing with breakthrough bleeding, don’t get too excited about this.

      • Bella

        Please let me know how this works for you. I have tried to find more reviews and can’t find any on the internet because it is so new. I got a script for it but I don’t want to take it till i hear more about it. Any other side affects you are feeling? I have anxiety/pmdd so I don’t want it to trigger that. My doc said this would be perfect because it will keep all my hormones the same every month. So I am not sure of it yet. Keep me posted.

      • kate

        I haven’t had any side effects except for major spotting….I’ve been on it for about a week.

    • Jen

      I am halfway through my 3rd week of Quartette. I was previously on Jolessa (a different 30 day pill) and never had any break through bleeding. I was on that for over a year with no problems at all. My doctor suggested Quartette due to the varying doses of hormones and told me a benefit would be a decrease in the amount of bleeding l had with my periods as well as shorten how long l would bleed. Well my 2nd week on this pill and l started having bleeding. And not just spotting, full on period-like bleeding. And it has not stopped for a week now. So far l am not impressed. I never had this problem with my other pill. I am going to finish out this pack and see what happens. And will likely start the next pack too because l am hopeful their claims are right and this will eventually lead to no breakthrough bleeding and lesser periods. But yeah, so far this sucks. :(
      Ps. I also haven’t been able to find any reviews on this. I guess we are the guinea pigs. Lol

    • Tiffany

      I have been on quartette for about a month and the second week I too began to spot and it gradually turned into a period. Unfortunately I’ve been bleed for about 3 weeks which is extremely different for any other bc I’ve taken. My doctor says after the first cycle it will deminish but that’s another 2 months. I’m not sure if I will continue to take this bc but I will finish this pack and I may start the other one but we’ll see

    • FatalDrug!!!

      I STARTED THIS BC PILL IN SEPTEMBER 2013, THE WEEK BEFORE CHRISTMAS, I WAS RUSHED TO THE HOSPITAL. I WAS TOLD THAT IF I HAD WAITED ANY LONGER I WOULD BE DEAD!!! I AM A 33 YEAR OLD VERY HEALTHY NON-SMOKER; I WAS DIAGNOSED AND ADMITTED FOR MULTIPLE BLOOD CLOTS OF MY LEFT LUNG!!! I WAS FLOORED!!! IT WAS VERY PAINFUL & I WOULD RATHER SHOOT OUT 5 or 6 BABIES WITHOUT ANESTHESIA!!!!! I AM TYPING THIS IN CAPITAL LETTERS BECAUSE I DON’T WANT THIS TO HAPPEN TO ANYONE & I DEFINITELY DON’T WANT ANYONE TO DIE FROM A STUPID BC PILL!!! YES, WE ARE GUINEA PIGS & UNFORTUNATELY WOMEN WILL HAVE TO DIE AND ALMOST LOSE THEIR LIVES LIKE MYSELF, IN ORDER FOR THEM TO PULL IT FROM THE MARKET!!!! THE FDA IS ALSO THE BLAME!! THE FDA IS SUPPOSE TO REGULATE DRUGS SO THE DRUGS ARE SAFE FOR HUMANS, BUT NOOOOOOO THEY CARE MORE ABOUT MONEY THAN HUMAN LIFE!!!! PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THIS DRUG & PLEASE DISCONTINUE THIS DRUG IF YOU HAVE ALREADY STARTED!!!!! LADIES, I DON’T WISH THIS ON NO ONE, PLEASE STOP & ALSO LET OTHERS KNOW THAT THIS DRUG ISN’T SAFE!! I ALMOST FORGOT, YES ALL OF THE DOCTOR’S I HAD DURING MY HOSPITAL OPINED THE BLOOD CLOTS WERE FROM THE QUARTETTE BC PILLS!! WARNING!!!!!!! Love, Life, Live

    • Adjunct

      So far, I am quite disappointed with Quartette. I had previously taken Seasonique, another extended pill type, and I had terrible breakthrough bleeding with it, so I was hoping that Quartette would be different. I am currently on my second ‘pack’ (I’ve already been through 1 period with it) and I am STILL having breakthrough bleeding on and off throughout the three months. Sometimes it is no more than a slight tinge on toilet paper and sometimes it is like a light period. This should not be happening at all, according to their claims. I hate it not only because it’s annoying, but because it makes me paranoid that there’s something wrong. I will be discussing another form of BC with my doctor when this pack is finished.

      • linnie

        How is the pills going for u so far

    • linnie

      Hello I too is on this pill and I’m on second pack I started bleeding like three weeks ago and have not stopped its light but wasting a lot of pads and panty liners it is so frustrating to keep bleeding like this but I have a couple of the light pink pills left and I start the purple ones next week so we will see if the bleeding stop but I also go to the doctor soon so hopefully we will find out what the problem is

    • Andrea

      I started quartette about a month before I got married almost a year ago. I had never taken another birth control pill before so my doctor prescribed this for me. I am on my third pack of quartette and have spotted during every single pack, but during this third pack, I have bled every day. I am now on the purple pills and about a month away from the yellow pill (which should be for when you’re on your period). I was very concerned why I hadn’t stopped bleeding and so I stopped taking the pill for one day (a week ago today) and started bleeding VERY HEAVY. I had about 10 blood clots in one day.. Which is not normal for my normal period at all.. I had to go to Walmart and get the overnight pads that are as long as your forearm and I go through about 3 of those a day.. It has been absolutely horrible. I’m calling my doctor tomorrow. I wish I would have stopped taken quartette sooner. I pray that it hasn’t messed me up.

    • Curious

      I’m in my 8th week in, I haven’t had any problems so far other than I have broken out BADLY! I’ve never had issues with acne before, I was wondering if this is happening to anyone else? It’s my entire back and I’ll get these huge under the skin pimples. Just wondering if this is happening to anyone else.