Cosmopolitan’s bread and butter is teaching women how to sex things up, in a billion different ways, which is precisely why we were shocked to read this cover line on their March Issue: “An Orgasm Almost Killed Her!” with the laughable tag, “We Are Not Kidding.” Are they biting the hand that feeds, or has their crack team of journalists finally found a dark side to doing it?According to the article, the woman who wound up in the hospital was on birth control. Although she wasn’t a smoker or had any other obvious risk factors, she got a blood clot in her leg from the pill. How did it cause her stroke-like symptoms? Dr. Amy Tuteur, a gynecologist, broke it down for us. Unfortunately, the blood clot was worsened by a hole in her heart — not the emotional kind we get from losing a lover, but the kind of hole that never closed up at birth. As fetuses, we all breathe through the umbilical chord, which passes air through a small opening in the heart. After birth, this hole seals up, but in this rare case, it didn’t close all the way. When the pill caused a blood clot in her leg, it went straight to her heart and then shot up into this poor woman’s brain. Good thing her boyfriend rushed her to the hospital and she was able to get treatment and survive.
Okay, compelling story, but what does an orgasm have to do with the near death experience? Well, having sex did raise her blood pressure, but so would something as simple as the abdominal pressure caused by coughing! While Cosmo is reminding us to be careful with birth control, we could live without the fear mongering, especially when the warning comes 10 pages after “5,678 Ways To Orgasm All Night Long!” [Salon]