Oral contraceptive use and benign gynecologic conditions: A review

Francesca Chiaffarino, Fabio Parazzini, Carlo L. La Vecchia, Elena Ricci, Pier Giorgio Crosignani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The following review considers the main epidemiologic data on oral contraceptives (OC) and the risk of major benign gynecologic diseases. Earlier studies investigating the relationship between OC use and functional ovarian cysts indicated that the use of high-dose combination OC have a protective effect, whereas low-dose monophasic or multiphasic pills have little or no effect. With regard to seromucinous cysts, the scanty data available are consistent with the notion of some protection of OC in current but not in former users, although possible effects of diagnostic and selection bias should be considered. Published data on the relationship between fibroids and OC appear too scattered to allow a precise quantification of risk. In any case, any relationship is moderate and, hence, of limited clinical and public health relevance. The data on OC and benign gynecologic conditions are reassuring in their absence of any consistent excess risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-18
Number of pages8
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1998


  • Oral contraceptive benign gynecologic disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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