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Norinyl is a prescription birth control pill that is available in two different strengths, one of which has a higher dose of estrogen. Norinyl is a combined oral contraceptive because it contains a progestin and an estrogen. Each pack of Norinyl contains 28 pills that must be taken in order and at the same time every day. Side effects may include nausea, breast tenderness, and headaches.

What Is Norinyl?

Norinyl® is a prescription birth control pill. There are two types of Norinyl birth control pills available, including:
  • Norinyl 1+35 (norethindrone and ethinyl estradiol), equivalent to Ortho-Novum® 1/35
  • Norinyl 1+50 (norethindrone and mestranol), a pill with a high dose of estrogen, equivalent to Ortho-Novum 1/50.
(Click Norinyl Uses for more information on what Norinyl is used for, including possible off-label uses.)

Who Makes Norinyl?

Norinyl products are made by Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Although Watson Pharmaceuticals is a manufacturer of generic medications, Norinyl is sometimes considered to be a brand-name medication, as it was originally made by a different company (see Generic Ortho-Novum for more information).

How Does Norinyl Work?

Norinyl is a combined oral contraceptive, the most common type of birth control pill used today. It is a combined oral contraceptive because it contains a combination of two different types of hormones. It contains both an estrogen (either ethinyl estradiol or mestranol, depending on the product) and a progestin (norethindrone). Most importantly, the hormones in Norinyl prevent pregnancy by stopping ovulation (the maturation and release of eggs from the ovaries).
Norinyl also works to prevent pregnancy in two other, minor ways. Norinyl changes the cervical mucus (the fluid of the cervix, which is the lower, narrow part of the uterus that is connected to the vagina), making it more difficult for sperm to enter the uterus. Lastly, Norinyl alters the lining of the uterus (called the endometrium), making it less receptive to an embryo.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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