Contraceptive Pill Regimens
pills specially packed for emergency contraception are available
as supplied in the New Emergency Health Kit 98, or when high-dose
pills containing 0.5 mg ethinylestradiol and 0.25 mg of levonorgestrel
When only low-dose pills containing 0.3
mg ethinylestradiol and 0.15 mg of levonorgestrel are available:
Emerging data indicate that alternative
hormonal regimes consisting of levonorgestrel-only pills are equally
effective and have significantly fewer side effects. When pills
containing 0.75 mg levonorgestrel are available:
Nausea occurs in about 50 per cent of clients using combined ECPs and
25 per cent for those using levonorgestrel only. Taking the pills with
food may reduce nausea. Routine prophylactic use of anti-emetics is
not recommended in settings with limited resources. If vomiting occurs
within two hours of taking ECPs, repeat the dose.
There are no known medical contraindications to the use of ECPs. The
dose of hormones used in ECPs is relatively small and the pills are
used for a short time. Contraindications associated with continuous
use of hormonal contraceptives do not apply.
not be given if there is a confirmed pregnancy. ECPs may be given when
pregnancy status is unclear and pregnancy testing is not available,
as there is no evidence of harm to the woman or to an existing pregnancy.