Christine Rousselle

In the midst of the Obama administration's epic battle against a group of nuns over the HHS contraception mandate, new research has come out showing that oral contraception use increases the risk of glaucoma in women.

Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness.

Researched showed that women who used oral contraception for over a three-year period were more than two times as likely to report being diagnosed with glaucoma than women who did not use birth control pills.

Lead researcher Dr. Shan Lin, a professor of clinical ophthalmology at the University of California San Francisco and colleagues at Duke University School of Medicine and Third Affiliated Hospital of Nanchang University in China utilized 2005-08 data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, administered by the Centers for Disease Control, which included 3,406 female U.S. participants age 40 years or older. Study participants completed the survey's vision and reproductive health questionnaire and underwent eye exams.

The study found women who used oral contraceptives, no matter which kind, for longer than three years were 2.05 times more likely to also report a diagnosis of glaucoma.

Other side effects of oral contraception include blood clots, heart problems, and liver issues. NuvaRing, another form of contraception that consists of a ring that is inserted vaginally, is currently the subject of a lawsuit and is alleged to have caused the deaths of thousands of young women.

Is it really a good idea to encourage these pills to be widely distributed?

Christine Rousselle

Christine Rousselle is the Managing Web Editor with Follow her on Twitter at @crousselle.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography