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Birth Control Pills - Medical Animation
 
This animation may only be used in support of a single legal proceeding and for no other purpose. Read our License Agreement for details. To license this animation for other purposes, click here.

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Birth Control Pills - Medical Animation
MEDICAL ANIMATION TRANSCRIPT: A series of events, called the menstrual cycle, happens about once every month to prepare a woman's body for pregnancy. Changing levels of natural chemicals in the bloodstream, called hormones, control these events. The reproductive organs affected by these hormones include the vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. The ovaries produce two main hormones called estrogen and progesterone. As the level of estrogen begins to rise, it causes the normally thick mucus inside the cervix to thin out. Estrogen also triggers other hormones to cause one of the ovaries to release an egg. This process is called ovulation. If a woman has sex during this time, a man's reproductive cells, called sperm, can pass through the thinner mucus to fertilize an egg. In the uterus, estrogen causes the lining to thicken which prepares it to receive a fertilized egg. Rising progesterone levels cause glands in the lining to release fluid that feeds the fertilized egg. Progesterone also causes the thinned out mucus in the cervix to become thick again, which prevents sperm from passing through. If an egg hasn't been fertilized, the levels of both estrogen and progesterone begin to fall. This drop in hormone levels causes menstruation, a process where the uterus sheds its inner tissue lining and blood through the vagina. Birth control pills are medications that a woman takes every day to prevent pregnancy. The most common and effective type of birth control pill is a combination pill. It contains both estrogen and progestin, which is a man made hormone, similar to progesterone. The estrogen and progestin from the pill maintain constant levels of these hormones in the body. These levels prevents the body from releasing similar hormones that cause ovulation. Without ovulation, there is no egg available for fertilization, so a woman can't get pregnant. Progestin also prevents pregnancy by keeping the mucus in the cervix thick enough so sperm can't get through it. A third effective of progestin on pregnancy involves its influence on the lining of the uterus. In contrast to natural progesterone, progestin is slightly different chemically. Over time it makes the uterine lining thinner instead of thicker. As a result, if fertilization of an egg does take place, the lining may be too thin for it to stay in the uterus, so it passes out of the body with the next menstrual period. Combination pills usually come in 28 day packs. Depending on the brand of pill, the first 21 to 24 pills are active pills because they contain hormones. The last four to seven pills are inactive or reminder pills that don't contain any hormones. Inactive pills allow the hormone levels in the body to drop so that bleeding during the menstrual cycle can occur. Even though the inactive pills don't contain any hormones, the woman remains protected against pregnancy during this time. Inactive pills are also called reminder pills because they keep a woman in the habit of taking a birth control pill every day. Progestin-only pills, or mini-pills, only contain progestin. Like the combination pill, the progestin in the progestin-only pills prevents pregnancy by preventing ovulation, thickening cervical mucus, and thinning out the lining of the uterus. Women may choose progestin-only pills if they can't tolerate the estrogen in combination pills due to side effects or other medical reasons. All progestin-only pills are active. Menstrual bleeding with progestin-only pills may occur once every month, on and off throughout the month, or there may be no bleeding at all. For the highest protection against pregnancy, it is important to take progestin-only pills at the same time every day. Both combination and progestin-only birth control pills are about 99% effective at preventing pregnancy if used correctly. This means about one out of 100 women will become pregnant each year if they use them correctly every day. However, they are only about 92% effective with typical use, which means about eight out of 100 women will become pregnant each year if they don't always remember to take them every day.

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Golden Valley, MN

"Whether it's demonstrating a rotator cuff tear, neck movement a few milliseconds after rear impact, or a proposed lumbar fusion, the Doe Report represents an instant on-line database of medical illustration for health-care and legal professionals.

Illustrations can be purchased 'as is' or modified within hours and sent either electronically or mounted on posterboard. An illustration is worth a thousand words, as juries perk up and look intently to capture concepts that are otherwise too abstract. Start with good illustrations, a clear and direct voice, a view of the jury as 12 medical students on day one of training, and your expert testimony becomes a pleasure, even on cross examination. An experienced trial lawyer should also emphasize these illustrations at the end of trial, as a means of visually reinforcing key concepts covered.

As a treating physician, I also use these accurate illustrations to educate my own patients about their medical conditions. The Doe Report is an invaluable resource, and its authors at MLA have always been a pleasure to work with."

Richard E. Seroussi M.D., M.Sc.
Diplomate, American Boards of Electrodiagnostic Medicine and PM&R
Seattle Spine & Rehabilitation Medicine
www.seattlespine.info

"The illustrations have consistently been well documented, accurate and timely. Most important though is that the illustrations demonstrate to juries and claims people the persuasive power of visual communication. Our firm has achieved multiple eight figure settlements and verdicts over the past ten years... Medical Legal Art has been there with us on every case."

Thomas C. Jones
Davis, Bethune & Jones, L.L.C.
Kansas City, MO
www.dbjlaw.net

"I thought you might want to know that after we sent a copy of your illustration to the defendants, with a copy to the insurance company, they increased their offer by an additional million dollars and the case was settled for $1,900,000.00.

I appreciate your help!"

O. Fayrell Furr, Jr.
Furr, Henshaw & Ohanesian
Myrtle Beach, SC
www.scmedicalmalpractice.com













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