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Emergency Contraception

Emergency Contraception

Emergency contraception is a drug designed to take after sex to prevent or end a pregnancy at its earliest stage. Sometimes it’s referred to as the morning-after pill. The two most common types are Plan B One-Step and ella.

Both kinds of morning-after pills can be used up to five days after sex, but Plan B One-Step becomes less effective over time. Some types of emergency contraception are sold without a prescription, while others require a prescription.

If you think you might be pregnant, your first step should be to take a pregnancy test. You can contact us to schedule an appointment or come by our office when you have time. Both types of morning-after pills can cause an abortion, depending on when you take them.

Plan B One-Step, ella, and other forms of emergency contraception are not recommended if you are already pregnant, and can actually hurt you if you take them while pregnant.

Plan B One-Step

Sometimes called “the morning-after pill,” Plan B One-Step is a form of emergency contraception. This means it is a type of birth control used after sex that is usually unprotected or if a condom may have broken.

Plan B One-Step is one pill that must be taken 72 hours or less after having sex to prevent or end an early pregnancy.1

It is easy to panic after having sex and rush to take the morning-after pill. If you are considering using Plan B One-Step, there are a few things you should know.

On the packaging insert for Plan B One-Step, its manufacturer cites a study that found Plan B One-Step prevented 84 percent of pregnancies.3 The makers of the drug claim that 7 out of 8 women who would have become pregnant did not.4 These figures are based on estimates of when women might have ovulated.

Does the morning-after pill cause abortions?

You can contact us to find out more about the morning-after pill, and about the options you have during a pregnancy.

Plan B One-Step’s manufacturer lays out three ways the drug can act. It may reduce your chances of becoming pregnant by preventing ovulation, or by preventing fertilization. It may also change the lining of the uterus so that an embryo that has been conceived cannot implant in the uterus, causing the embryo to die.6

Taking Plan B after you get pregnant stops a new human life from growing. This is an abortion.7 Since there is no pregnancy test you can take this early in the process, it is impossible to tell whether or not you are pregnant before taking the morning after pill.

Plan B One-Step is associated with the following side effects: nausea, abdominal pain, fatigue, headache, heavier menstrual bleeding and dizziness.8

Note: We offer peer counseling and accurate information about all pregnancy options, parenting, adoption, and abortion. We do not offer or refer for abortion services or the morning-after pill. The information presented on this website is intended for general education purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional and/or medical advice.

1 Plan B® One-Step package insert. “Dosage and Administration.” Package insert available at: http://www.planbonestep.com (Accessed March 5, 2015)

2 Plan B® One-Step package insert. “Contraindications.” Package insert available at: http://www.planbonestep.com (Accessed March 5, 2015)

3 Plan B® One-Step package insert. “Clinical Studies.” Package insert available at: http://www.planbonestep.com (Accessed March 5, 2015)

4 "Plan B One-Step®: FAQs." Plan B One-Step®: FAQs. Accessed March 6, 2015. http://www.planbonestep.com/faq.aspx.

5 "Conception & Pregnancy: Ovulation, Fertilization, and More." WebMD. Accessed March 6, 2015. http://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/understanding-conception.

6 "Plan B One-Step® HCP: Important Info." Plan B One-Step® HCP: Important Info. Accessed March 6, 2015. http://www.planbonestep.com/about-plan-b-one-step/taking-it.aspx.

7 Plan B® One-Step package insert. “Mechanism of Action.” Package insert available at: http://www.planbonestep.com (Accessed March 5, 2015)

8 Plan B® One-Step package insert. “Adverse Reactions.” Package insert available at: http://www.planbonestep.com (Accessed March 5, 2015)

ella

ella is a form of emergency contraception, intended to be taken after sex.

ella is one pill, which needs to be taken within 120 hours (5 days) after sex.1 It can’t be purchased over-the-counter, and is only available by prescription in the United States.

ella is a heavy dose of hormones, and does not work every time it is used. ella is not meant to be used as a regular contraceptive.2 It is only to be used for a single instance of having sex.3

It is easy to panic after having sex and rush to take an emergency contraception like ella. If you are considering taking ella, there are a few things you should know.

You can only become pregnant on certain days of the month, around the time you ovulate. Taking ella when you cannot become pregnant exposes you to a fairly new drug that has not yet been fully tested.

There is a lot we—and the makers of the drug—just don’t know about ella.

You may already be pregnant, and if you are, taking ella could harm you. You should not take ella if you are breast-feeding, for regular contraceptive use, or more than once during one menstrual cycle.4

According to the manufacturers, you should make sure you aren’t already pregnant before you take ella.5

To find out if you are pregnant, {contact us}, {make an appointment} or {come visit our center}. We can help you consider your options and provide you with the information you need to make the healthiest choice.

Much is unknown about ella, including:

  • its effects on women under 186
  • its effects on women over age 357
  • its effects on women taking other forms of hormonal contraception8
  • its effects on pregnant women9
  • its effects on women who are breast-feeding10
  • its effects after repeated use within the same menstrual cycle11
  • its effects on women who have not started their period12

Remember, your body and health are important. Take time to make the best decision. Please contact us to get more information.

All morning-after pills, including ella, can cause abortions.

Even though its marketers say ella prevents pregnancy—and does not cause abortions—its manufacturers are required by law to state that ella can cause an abortion. ella can cause an abortion in two ways, which both stop a human embryo from getting the nutrition he or she needs from his or her mother.[1]

The reason so little is known about ella is the only research on this drug was conducted on women who were early in pregnancy. Based upon how this drug worked in animals that were tested, it is reasonable to expect that ella would also cause an abortion in an early pregnancy.

 

There are risks and side effects associated with ella. The most common adverse reactions include headache, nausea, stomach (abdominal) pain, menstrual cramps, fatigue, and dizziness.15

 

If you have taken ella and are experiencing abdominal pain three to five weeks later, you should see a doctor right away, because you may have an ectopic pregnancy.16 An ectopic pregnancy is a potentially life-threatening condition where an embryo implants outside of a mother’s uterus, often in her fallopian tube.

After a woman takes ella, her period may occur earlier or later than expected by a few days.17

 

Note: Our center offers peer counseling and accurate information about all pregnancy options, parenting, adoption, and abortion. We do not offer or refer for abortion services or the morning-after pill. The information presented on this website is intended for general education purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional and/or medical advice.

1 ella package insert. “Dosage and Administration.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

2 ella package insert. “Indications and Uses.” Package insert available at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

3 ella package insert. “How effective is ella?” Package insert available at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

4 ella package insert. “Patient Counseling Information.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

5 ella package insert. “Warnings and Precautions.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

6 ella package insert. “Pediatric Use.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

7 ella package insert. “Clinical Studies.” Package insert available at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

8 ella package insert. “Patient Counseling Information.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

9 ella package insert. “Pregnancy.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

10 ella package insert. “Nursing Mothers.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

11 ella package insert. “Repeated Use.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

12 ella package insert. “Pediatric Use.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

13 "Conception & Pregnancy: Ovulation, Fertilization, and More." WebMD. Accessed March 6, 2015. http://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/understanding-conception.

14 ella package insert.” Mechanism of Action.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

15 ella package insert. “Adverse Reactions.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

16 ella package insert. “Patient Counseling Information.” Package insert available at: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

17 ella package insert. “Effect on Menstrual Cycle.” Package insert available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2010/022474s000lbl.pdf (Accessed March 6, 2015)

[1] “Advisory Committee for Reproductive Health Drugs; Notice of Meeting Ulipristal acetate tablets, (NDA) 22–474, Laboratoire HRA Pharma,” American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, http://www.aaplog.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/AAPLOG-Ulipristal-Comments_2010.pdf (accessed April 30, 2015).

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