Cilest discontinued 2024 – What is the alternative to Cilest?

On November 19, 2018, the manufacturer of Cilest (norgestimate and ethinyl estradiol) informed healthcare providers that the oral contraceptive would be discontinued by July 2019. This choice was made for commercial reasons rather than security, efficacy, or quality concerns. Is Cilest discontinued?

Cilest supplies ran out by mid-July 2019. So, both doctors and patients prepared for a change to other contraceptives. In this article, let us learn more about why Client has been discontinued.

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Overview of Cilest

Cilest is an extremely effective birth control tablet. It prevents pregnancy by more than 99%. It may also aid women with heavy and painful periods.

Cilest is a combined oral contraceptive pill. It contains two synthetic hormones: norgestimate (a progestogen) and ethinyl estradiol (an estrogen). This combination prevents pregnancy through multiple mechanisms:

  • Inhibition of ovulation: The hormones prevent the release of an egg from the ovaries.
  • Cervical mucus thickening: This makes it difficult for sperm to enter the uterus.
  • Endometrial alteration: The lining of the uterus becomes less suitable for the implantation of a fertilized egg.

Cilest, like other combination oral contraceptives, helps beyond avoiding pregnancy. It also aids in:

  • menstrual cycle regulation,
  • cramp relief, and
  • the treatment of acne and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Why is Cilest being discontinued?

Cilest discontinued 2024 - What is the alternative to Cilest?

Cilest is a popular combined oral contraceptive. The discontinuation of it led to many concerns and queries from users and doctors. The decision to stop manufacturing was made in July 2019. The decision was driven by commercial factors rather than concerns about the drug’s safety or efficacy.

Cilest debuted in the late 1980s. It became a popular contraceptive due to its dual-hormone formula. It successfully prevents getting pregnant. Despite its success, the industry’s changing dynamics and competition forced the manufacturer to leave the market.

Thus, the decision to discontinue Cilest was mostly business-related. The pharmaceutical industry is competitive. To be viable, manufacturers have to evaluate their product portfolios constantly. Factors that influenced the decision included:

  1. The market for hormonal contraceptives has become highly competitive. Many alternatives provide similar results and benefits. Newer formulations, extended-release choices, and other methods of delivery have gained popularity. Thus, these are all reducing the market share of earlier medicines, such as Cilest.
  2. When patents expire, generic copies of hormonal contraceptives become available. They can also be bought at cheaper prices. This lowers the profitability of branded drugs such as Cilest.
  3. Pharmaceutical businesses may consider streamlining production. This is to focus on more profitable or creative products. To better allocate resources, it may be necessary to discontinue less profitable lines.

Alternatives to Cilest

There are two direct alternatives to Cilest: Cilique and Lizinna. They both have the same active ingredients and work in the same way. These options ensure a smooth transition for people who need to modify their pill of choice.


Cilique is chemically similar to Cilest. It gives the same hormone dosage, which offers the same level of contraceptive protection and benefits.


Lizinna is an alternative that has the same active components as Cilest. It performs identically, making it an excellent choice for those hoping to move from Cilest.

When switching to a new contraceptive, users can experience some symptoms. They are headaches, nausea, or spotting between cycles. These side effects are usually mild and temporary. However, if you experience any severe symptoms, you should seek medical attention right away. It includes blood clots, severe headaches, or eye issues.

Combining oral contraceptives with some drugs may lessen their effectiveness. Always notify your doctors of any extra medicines you are taking. This allows them to look into potential interactions and change your contraceptive method as needed.


The discontinuation of Cilest marks the end of a widely used contraceptive option. But Cilique and Lizinna are available to offer comparable options. They ensure the continuity of contraceptives. 

Care. Users should smoothly move to these alternatives by finishing their existing pack of Cilest and starting the new pack without delay.

Healthcare practitioners should proactively identify patients who use Cilest. They should counsel them to switch to other alternatives. This helps maintain contraceptive efficacy and manage possible negative effects during the transition. Users should also understand how to handle missed medicines. They should be aware of potential reactions to other medications.

Users may ensure that their contraceptive choices continue to provide benefits and protection. They should stay informed about the reasons behind Cilest’s discontinuation and the alternatives that are available.

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