Scientia Africana

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Investigation into the effects of oral contraceptives on some haematological parameters of Wistar albino rat Rattus rattus

N.F. Okoye, A.A. Uwakwe


In this study, the in vivo effect of oral contraceptives namely Microgynon a combined pill (0.15mg levonorgestrel and 0.03mg ethinylestradiol) and Primolut -N a mini pill (5mg norethisterone) onsome haematological parameters of wistar albino rat were investigated. The haemoglobin count, packed cell volume, total white blood cell count, platelet count, neutrophil and lymphocyte count were assayed. Test results showed that the oral contraceptives had an increasingeffect on the haematological parameters. This increase was not dose dependent. The highest increase of 18.00 ± 1.40 vs control 14.30 ± 1.10 (g/dl) was obtained for Hb at the concentration of 0.72μg at 2 hours duration (p< 0.05).The blood PCV, WBC, platelet, neutrophil and lymphocyte analysis also showed increases. The possible implications of these findings on the female rat and by extrapolation on the female ‘homo sapiens’ are that laboratory tests involving full blood analysis should be undergone before these drugs are taken. Check-up tests should also be performed every six months, to identify women who might be at risk of developing minor or serious side effects that might affect major organs of the body.

Keywords: Blood, ethinylestradiol, haematological parameters, lenonorgestrel, norethisterone, oral contraceptives

AJOL African Journals Online