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Emergency Contraception

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EllaOne 30mg Tablet
Pack Size: 1 tablet
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Our Price: £34.99
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  • EllaOne should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex.
  • It is only effective up to 120 hours after, if it has been longer than this you should not take EllaOne and see your GP to discuss emergency contraception.
  • If you are sick or suffer with diarrhoea within 3 hours of taking EllaOne it may not have been absorbed and will not be effective. You will need to obtain another supply as soon as possible.

Unfortunately EllaOne is not 100% effective at preventing pregnancy, however it is up to 98% effective if it is taken within 120 hours of unprotected sex.

If your next period has not arrived five or more days from when it was due you should take a pregnancy test.

EllaOne is a 'morning after pill' that is taken in a single dose for emergency contraception. EllaOne is the newest form of 'morning after pill' available and be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after unprotected sex or contraceptive accident and still remain effective. EllaOne is thought to be up to 98% effective at preventing pregnancy as long as it is taken within 120 hours of the incident. 

EllaOne contains the hormone ulipristal acetate. It acts to prevent the release of eggs from the ovaries during ovulation and to reduce the chance of a fertilised egg implanting in the womb. 

EllaOne should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex. A very small minority of women feel sick after taking EllaOne, if you are sick within 3 hours of taking the tablet you must obtain a further supply as you will not be covered.

EllaOne may cause your next period to come earlier or later than normal, and it may be heavier or lighter than usual.

Please read the Patient Information Leaflet for side effects and additional information. 

Usually less than 1 in 10 people experience side effects from EllaOne, however the most common may include abdominal pains, nausea, sickness, dizziness, spotting or abnormal bleeding, headaches, dizziness, mood changes, breast or back pain, painful periods, or tiredness. Taking EllaOne with some food may help to reduce any nausea you may experience.

Less common side effects can include:

  • diarrhoea, heartburn, wind, dry mouth

  • unusual or irregular vaginal bleeding, heavy/prolonged periods premenstrual syndrome, vaginal irritation or discharge, lesser or greater sex drive

  • hot flushes

  • appetite changes, emotional disorders, anxiety, agitation, trouble sleeping, sleepiness, migraine visual disturbances

  • influenza

  • acne, skin lesions, itching

  • fever, chills, malaise

  • genital pain or itching, pain during sex, rupture of an ovarian cyst, unusually light period

  • loss of concentration, vertigo, shaking, disorientation, fainting

  • unusual sensation in eye, red eye, sensitivity to light

  • dry throat, disturbance in taste

  • hives (itchy rash), feeling thirsty

If you experience any adverse effects from taking your prescribed medicine it is important to let a heathcare professional know immediately. In a medical emergency you should contact the emergency services or go straight to your local Accident & Emergency.

EllaOne can make hormonal contraceptives, such as pills or patches, less effective. After taking EllaOne you should continue to use your regular hormonal contraceptive and also use condoms until your next period.

The following medicines may make EllaOne work less well:

  • Phenytoin, fosphenytoine, phenobarbital, primidone, carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine (used to treat epilepsy)

  • Ritonavir, efavirenz, nevirapine (used to treat HIV infection)

  • Rifampicin, rifabutin (used to treat tuberculosis)

  • St John's wort (Hypericum perforatum) or herbal medicines that contain it (used for depression or anxiety).

If you are taking any of the above medcines you should discuss emergency contraception with your GP to ensure that it is effective.

Please read the Patient Information Leaflet enclosed with your medicines for a full list of medicines that may affect EllaOne.

Do not take EllaOne if your period is already overdue as you may already be pregnant. You should see your GP or family planning clinic.

EllaOne should not replace your regular method of contraception, such as the pill or condoms; these are more reliable and effective.

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Levonelle 1500mg Tablet
Pack Size: 1 tablet
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Our Price: £19.99
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Takes less than 3 minutes to complete

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  • Levonelle should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex; the sooner it is taken, the more effective it is at preventing unwanted pregnancy.
  • It is only effective up to 72 hours after, if it has been longer than this you should not take Levonelle and see your GP to discuss emergency contraception.
  • If you are sick or suffer with diarrhoea within 2 hours of taking Levonelle it may not have been absorbed and will not be effective. You will need to obtain another supply as soon as possible.

Levonelle is not 100% effective at preventing pregnancy, however it is 95% effective after 24 hours. It is important to try to take it within this window if possible. After this the success rate becomes 85% and 58% after 48 and 72 hours respectively. If you cannot take Levonelle within the first 24 - 48 hours after unprotected sex, you may wish to see your GP to discuss alternatives such as EllaOne.

If your next period has not arrived five or more days from when it was due you should take a pregnancy test.

Levonelle contains the active ingredient levonorgestrel and is taken as a single dose for emergency contraception. It must be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex or contraceptive accident for it to be effective. The effectiveness of Levonelle at preventing pregnancy decreases the later you take it after unprotected sex:

Up to 24 hours: 95% effective.

24 - 48 hours: 85% effective.

48 - 72 hours: 58% effective.

As you can see it is important that Levonelle is taken as early as possible to ensure it is effective. Levonelle should not be taken more than 72 hours after an incident of unprotected sex as it is unlikely to be effective. If it has been more than 72 hours you should see your GP for other emergency contraceptive options.

The sooner Levonelle is taken, the more effective it is and therefore it should be taken as soon as possible after the incident. A very small minority of women feel sick after taking Levonelle, if you are sick within 3 hours of taking the tablet you must obtain a further supply as it will not be effective. If you need a further supply of emergency contraception due to sickness with Levonelle, you should speak to your doctor or local family planning clinic for a more suitable emergency contraceptive method.

Levonelle may cause your next period to come earlier or later than normal, and it may be heavier or lighter than usual. This is normal. If your period is more than five days late, you should take a preganacy test or see your GP.

Please read the Patient Information Leaflet before you take Levonelle.

If you do experience side effects from Levonelle the most common can include abdominal pains, nausea, sickness, diarrhoea, dizziness, breast tenderness, headaches, spotting or abnormal bleeding. Taking Levonelle with some food may help to reduce any nausea you may experience.

A very small number of people may be allergic to Levonelle. This will show as a skin reaction including itchiness, rash and swelling of the face. If this occurs you should see you doctor immeidately.

If you experience any adverse effects from taking your prescribed medicine it is important to let your doctor know immediately. In a medical emergency you should contact the emergency services or go straight to your local Accident & Emergency.

The following medicines may make Levonelle less effective at preventing pregnancy:

  • Barbiturates and other medicines used to treat epilepsy (e.g.primidone, phenytoin, and carbamazepine)
  • Medicines used to treat tuberculosis (e.g. rifampicin, rifabutin)
  • Ritonavir (used to treat HIV)
  • Griseofulvin (used to treat fungal infections)
  • St John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum - a herbal remedy)
  • Ciclosporin (suppresses the immune system)

If you take any of the above medicines you should discuss a more effective form of contraception with your GP or local family planning clinic.

If you suffer with any of the following conditions, Levonelle may not be suitable for you and could be ineffective:

  • Bowel disease (e.g. Crohn’s disease) that interferes with the way you digest your food
  • Severe liver problems
  • If you have ever had an ectopic pregnancy (where the baby develops somewhere outside the womb)
  • If you have ever had a disease called salpingitis (inflammation of the Fallopian tubes)

If you take any of the above apply you should discuss a more effective form of contraception with your GP or local family planning clinic.

Do not take Levonelle if your period is already overdue as you may already be pregnant. You should see your GP or family planning clinic. If you have already taken Levonelle but suspect that you may now be pregnant, there is no evidence that Levonelle will harm your baby.

Levonelle should not replace your regular method of contraception, such as the pill or condoms; these are more reliable and effective.

Please read the Patient Information Leaflet enclosed with your medicines before taking Levonelle.

About Emergency Contraception

Emergency Contraception Background

The Independent Pharmacy Online Doctor service allows women who require an advance supply of an emergency contraceptive pill to have a private consultation with a doctor and receive the treatment they require in a safe and discreet manner.

Emergency contraception is available as advance supply to women over the age of 18. It allows women to be prepared for a contraceptive accident, unprotected sex or a missed pill, should one occur. A split condom or missed pills can happen to anyone and having a morning-after pill to take when it is required allows women the peace of mind to know they are protected in all eventualities.

This service provides an advance supply of emergency contraception for use in the future. You can get a supply of the emergency contraceptive pill in advance of having unprotected sex from our Online Doctor if you:

  • Are worried about your contraceptive method failing
  • Are going on holiday
  • Cannot get hold of emergency contraception easily

If you need an immediate supply following a contraceptive accident or unprotected sex you should see your GP or your local pharmacy to ensure you can take your emergency contraception as quickly as possible.

It is important to note that if you have had unprotected sex or have had a contraceptive accident, emergency contraception can help to prevent pregnancy, however it does not protect against STIs such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea. If you have had unprotected sex you should have an STI check at your GP surgery or local sexual health clinic.

For advice on what to do if you have missed one or more contraceptive pills, see the NHS Choices website.

We are also able to supply contraceptive tablets (the ‘pill’) to allow you to obtain a repeat supply of your regular contraceptive pill without the need to see your GP.

 

Emergency Contraception Treatment

There are two available single dose treatments for emergency contraception; Levonelle and EllaOne. They both contain synthetic hormones that act either by preventing the release of an egg for the ovaries, preventing sperm from fertilising an egg that has already been released or preventing a fertilised egg from embedding into the womb lining.

The morning-after pill should only be taken once in a menstrual cycle at most and for the rest of the cycle you should use barrier contraception such as a condom, even in addition to your regular contraceptive pill. The emergency contraceptive pills do not provide any lasting contraceptive cover for the rest of your cycle. Levonelle and EllaOne should not be used as a regular form of contraception. They should be taken as soon as possible after the contraceptive accident, ideally within the first 24 hours.

The emergency contraceptive pill does not normally affect your period, however it can make it earlier or later than expected. If your period is more than 7 days late or usually light or short, you should take a pregnancy test or see your GP to check for pregnancy.

Although they are generally well tolerated, like all medicines the emergency contraceptive pills can cause some side effects. The most common side effects include: 

  • Abdominal pain
  • Headache
  • Irregular menstrual bleeding (spotting or heavy bleeding) before your next period is due
  • Nausea
  • Tiredness

It is important to note that if you vomit or suffer with diarrhoea within 3 hours of taking your pill, it may not be fully absorbed. You should see your local pharmacist or GP for a repeat supply.

There are no identified medical conditions that would make Levonelle unsuitable for use. EllaOne should not be used by women who: 

  • May already be pregnant
  • Are allergic to any of the components of the drug
  • Have severe asthma that is not properly controlled by steroids
  • Have hereditary problems with lactose metabolism

For those who do not want to take emergency hormonal contraception or those for whom it is not suitable, a copper intrauterine device (IUD) can be fitted within 120 hours (5 days) of the incident. It is 99.9% effective if fitted with this time period and can also be used as ongoing contraception. 

*RRP is based on the highest price found for a comparable online service found on 04/09/14.

The Independent Pharmacy is an online pharmacy and online doctor service is owned and operated by ABSM Healthcare Ltd (Company Reg. 08515600) and Red Label Medical Ltd (Company Reg. 08676338). All information that appears on this website is intended for information purposes only and should be used to supplement, not replace, your relationship with your local healthcare professionals. You should consult your doctor if you think you may have a health problem or before you start taking a new medicine. Please ensure you always read the information leaflets supplied with any medicinal products.For more information see our policies and terms and conditions at the bottom of every page. © 2014 ABSM Healthcare Ltd. All rights reserved.
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