Levonelle is an emergency contraceptive which is 95% effective if used during the first 24 hours after unprotected sex. However, you can take this oral pill for up to three days (72 hours) after unprotected sex. It contains the active ingredient levonorgestrel, which works in three different ways to reduce the risk of pregnancy. Levonelle is widely prescribed and is well tolerated by most women.
"If your usual contraceptive has let you down or you didn’t use protection, emergency contraception can be used to reduce the risk of pregnancy significantly. "
Levonelle Frequently Asked Questions
Levonelle can be taken up to three days (72 hours) after unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy, which gives you time to make sure taking Levonelle is the right decision for you, either alone or by discussing it with your partner. Taking this medication as early as possible (24 hours after unprotected sex) gives you a 95% chance of preventing pregnancy.
During the menstrual cycle, a mature egg is released from the ovaries. When this happens, the ovary produces the female hormone progesterone, which prevents the release of further eggs. The main ingredient in this pill is levonorgestrel; a hormone that tricks the body into believing ovulation has already occurred by making high levels of synthetic progesterone. The production of this hormone prevents the release of further eggs from the ovaries.
Levonorgestrel also thickens the natural mucus in the womb making it more difficult for sperm to enter the womb through the vagina. The less chance the sperm has to survive, the more unlikely it is for the egg to be fertilized.
Levonelle is suitable for women of 18 years of age and above who have had unprotected sex within the last three days and want to insure against pregnancy.
Not all women may be suitable to take the Levonelle pill. If you have a disease of the bowel which causes malabsorption such as Crohn's Disease or you are suffering from liver disease, you may not be able to use this medication.
The Levonelle pill should be taken within the first day after unprotected sex, when it is at its most effective. If taken between 25 and 48 hours after unprotected sex, its effectiveness decreases from 95% to 85%, which still gives you a strong chance of avoiding pregnancy. It's therefore important to act quickly, in a matter of hours rather than days.
Levonelle can be taken at any stage of the menstrual cycle; the pill should be swallowed with water as soon as possible after unprotected sex. Women who are already taking regular contraceptive should continue to do so as this emergency contraceptive can only be used once every menstrual cycle. A barrier contraceptive is still recommended for use to ensure against the possibility of falling pregnant.
Most women do not experience side effects as this pill contains only one hormone: progestogen. This means you're less likely to feel unwell than earlier versions of the morning after pill.
Reported side effects include:
Your period may also come later after taking Levonelle, which can cause some spotting or bleeding before your next period.
Levonelle can be requested online from Onlineclinic. We ask each patient to complete a short consultation with a GMC registered doctor to determine their suitability to use this medication. Once the online consultation process has been completed, a GMC registered doctor will review your details and if he or she finds that you are suitable to take this morning-after pill a prescription will be sent to our pharmacy. The medication will then be dispatched for next day delivery.