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Emergency contraception

It is so rare to find your true LOVE. And sometimes you need full relaxation and just happiness and love. If you are lucky you can have a very special day full of love, flowers, romantic dinner and paradise night. What if you had unexpected romantic day and you absolutely forgot that you are on ovulation period and you did not protect yourself from pregnancy? Emergency contraception would be the best solution.

There are easy solutions called “Plan B” or “emergency contraception” or “morning after pills”.

Plan B is a kind of contraception which used as an emergency procedure to prevent unwanted pregnancy which could happen after unprotected sexual intercourse. Plan B can be used in following cases:

  • when no contraceptive has been used,
  • when contraceptive methods failed (missed pills, condom rupture, diaphragm dislodgement, etc.),
  • when girl or woman has been a victim of the sexual attack (abuse).

There are two kinds of Plan B and/or emergency contraception:

Emergency contraception

Emergency contraception

1. emergency contraceptive pills (progestogen-only or combined oestrogen-progestogen oral contraceptives);

2. copper-releasing intrauterine devices (IUDs).

Plan B should be used within 3 days (72 hours) after unprotected sexual contact.

Combined pills (oestrogen-progestogen pills) for Plan B

Two pills should be taken as the first dose as soon as possible after unprotected sexual contact but no later than 72 hours. It should be followed by another two pills after 12 hours.
                                            OR
Four pills can be taken as the first dose as soon as possible (same as above). It should be followed by another four pills after 12 hours.

Progestogen-only pills for Plan B

A single dose of 1.5 mg levonorgestrel should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sexual contact but no later than 72 hours.
                                                   OR
One dose of 0.75 mg can be taken as the first dose as soon as possible (same as above). It should be followed by the same dose after 12 hours.

Plan B with combined pills reduce the risk of pregnancy after unprotected sexual contact by about 56%-89% if taken within 72 hours. Plan B with progestogen-only pills reduce the risk by about 60%-93% if taken within 72 hours.

In general the probability of the pregnancy after one unprotected sexual contact is 8%. Women who use Plan B (emergency contraception) are able to reduce the pregnancy risk to 1%-2%. The efficacy is better the sooner Plan B (emergency contraception) is used after unprotected sex.

In general Plan B with emergency contraception pills are 95% effective if taken within 24 hours; 85% effective if taken within 25-48 hours and 58% effective if taken within 49-72 hours.

Mode of action for Plan B with hormonal pills:

Hormonal emergency contraception achieves its contraceptive effect by several mechanisms depending on the time in a woman’s cycle it is taken. It can inhibit or delay ovulation and may also interact with ovum and sperm transport, and fertilization. Studies differ on whether hormonal emergency contraception can cause changes in the endometrium that would be sufficient to interfere with implantation. There is no evidence that hormonal emergency contraception dislodges the embryo after implantation has occurred.

Side-Effects of Plan B with hormonal pills:

• Nausea: occurs in about 50% of clients using combined emergency contraceptive pills (ECPs), but it does not usually last more than 24 hours. Nausea occurs in approximately 20% of women using progestogen-only ECPs.

• Vomiting: occurs in about 20% of clients using combined ECPs and 5% of women using the progestogen- only ECPs. When the combined regimen is used, anti-emetic pre-treatment may be considered; with the levonorgestrel-only regimen this is unnecessary. If vomiting occurs within one hour after taking a dose, it is common practice to repeat the dose. However, there is no evidence that this improves efficacy; indeed, vomiting can be an indication that the hormone has been absorbed. In case of vomiting, further pills may be administered vaginally. Although there are no clinical data supporting the efficacy of this practice, contraceptive steroid hormones are known to be readily absorbed from the vagina.

• Irregular uterine bleeding: some women may experience spotting after taking ECPs. The majority of women will have their menstrual period on time or early; if there is a delay of more than 1 week, the possibility of pregnancy should be excluded.

• Other side-effects: breast tenderness, headache, fatigue, abdominal pain and dizziness.

Emergency contraception

Emergency contraception

Cooper-releasing IUD for Plan B

A cooper-releasing IUD can be inserted by the professionals within 5 days of unprotected sexual contact which will insure your Plan B.

Plan B with IUDs is highly effective (up to 98% of cases) with the possibility of the pregnancy less than 1%.

When IUD is used for Plan B?

• When the Plan B with hormonal methods are less effective (because more than 72 hours have elapsed).

• The client is considering using an IUD for continuous, long-term contraception (not only for Plan B).

Side-effects of Plan B with IUDs

Side-effects are the same as for continuous IUD use. If the client does not keep the IUD for continuous contraception, any side-effect will usually disappear after the IUD is removed.


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4 Comments

  1. On the 15th of August I had sex with my boyfriend and the condom slipped off. 13 hours later I took the morning after pill. The next 24 hours I felt sick but it only lasted that long. The last 4 days I have been experiencing brown discharge. My period isn’t due until the 3rd of September. Is this normal? Should I take a pregnancy test as I am so stressed out?

    • it can be side effect of emergency contraception

  2. I had unprotectd sex on the 19 august evening,took a morning after pill th next day.my period is due on the 7th september,but i m only experiencing light brown bleeding,no pain,and movement on the left side of the abdomen.am i pregnant?

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