To use the morning-after pill:
- Follow the morning-after pill's instructions. If you use Plan B One-Step, take one Plan B One-Step pill as soon as possible and less than 72 hours after unprotected sex. If you use ella, take one ella pill as soon as possible and less than 120 hours after unprotected sex.
- If you vomit within two hours after taking the morning-after pill, contact your health care provider to discuss whether to repeat the dose.
- Don't have sex until you start another method of birth control. The morning-after pill doesn't offer lasting protection from pregnancy. If you have unprotected sex in the days and weeks after taking the morning-after pill, you're at risk of becoming pregnant. Be sure to begin using or resume use of birth control.
Using the morning-after pill may delay your period by up to one week after you normally expect it. If you don't get your period within three to four weeks of taking the morning-after pill, take a pregnancy test.
Normally, you don't need to follow up with your health care provider after using the morning-after pill. However, if you have bleeding or spotting that lasts longer than a week or develop severe lower abdominal pain three to five weeks after taking the morning-after pill, contact him or her. These may be signs or symptoms of a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy — when the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus, usually in a fallopian tube.
April 14, 2015
- Zieman M. Emergency contraception. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed March 4, 2015.
- FDA approves Plan B One-Step emergency contraceptive for use without a prescription for all women of child-bearing potential. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm358082.htm. Accessed March 4, 2015.
- Shohel M, et al. A systematic review of effectiveness and safety of different regimens of levonorgestrel oral tablets for emergency contraception. BioMed Central Women's Health. 2014;14:54.
- Ella (prescribing information). Parsippany, N.J.: Watson Pharma Inc.; 2012. http://pi.watson.com/data_stream.asp?product_group=1699&p=pi&language=E. Accessed March 4, 2015.
- Plan B One-Step (prescribing information). Pomona, N.Y.: Duramed Pharmaceuticals Inc.; 2009. http://www.planbonestep.com/pdf/PlanBOneStepFullProductInformation.pdf. Accessed March 4, 2015.
- Koyama A, et al. Emerging options for emergency contraception. Clinical Medical Insights: Reproductive Health. 2013;7;23.