For the time being, scientists are only testing a new year-round birth control pill called Lybrel developed by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals.

The new form of birth control includes pills that contain lower doses of hormones, 20 micrograms of ethinyl estradiol and 90 micrograms of levonorgestrel. The lower dose is to reduce some side effects related to regular birth control and eliminate menstrual cycles altogether.

In order to eliminate the cycle, the pills need to be taken every day. Besides this anomaly, the pills also cause breakthrough bleeding and spotting in some women. Which women are going to suffer from the side effects of the new pills cannot be determined in advance.
The unpredictable bleedings affect about 20% of the women and can last up to six days. This breakthrough bleeding and spotting is one of the reasons why so many women decide to quit the studies.
Lybrel birth control is still under studies and hasn’t been approved by the FDA yet.

Women suffering from period-related symptoms like mood changes, menstrual cramps and headaches may benefit from the year-round pills. The pills also reduce the risks of thrombosis due to relatively lower hormonal doses.

The study done on the pills included 2,134 sexually active women aged 18 to 49. They were supposed to take a pill daily without any breaks. One year after the study started 79 % of the women reported an absence of bleeding and 58.7 % reported having no menstrual cycles.

Some health experts believe that the new contraceptive method should be tested in a clinical trial against the standard birth-control pill. Another concern is that the pills haven’t been checked for any long-term use side effects.