Proper Use

Drug information provided by: IBM Micromedex

It is very important that you use this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, and do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.

This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

This medicine is available in blister packs. Each blister pack contains 28 tablets with different colors that need to be taken in the same order as directed on the blister pack.

When you begin using this medicine, your body will require at least 7 days to adjust before a pregnancy will be prevented. Use a second form of contraception (eg, condom, spermicide, or diaphragm) for the first 7 days of your first cycle of pills.

Take this medicine at the same time each day. Birth control pills work best when no more than 24 hours pass between doses.

Do not skip or delay taking your pill by more than 24 hours. If you miss a dose, you could get pregnant. Ask your doctor for ways to help you remember to take your pills or about using another method of birth control.

You may have light bleeding or spotting when you first take the pill.

You may feel sick or nauseous, especially during the first few months that you take this medicine. If your nausea is continuous and does not go away, call your doctor.

If you vomit or have diarrhea within 3 to 4 hours of taking this medicine, treat this as a missed dose and follow the instructions in the patient leaflet or call your doctor.

If you are switching from another birth control method to using Lo/Ovral®:

  • Transdermal patch, vaginal ring, implant, or injection—Start Lo/Ovral® on the day that you would usually apply, insert, or inject the medicine.
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)—Start Lo/Ovral® on the day of removing the IUD. Use a second form of birth control for the first 7 days if the IUD has not been removed on the first day of your menstrual cycle.

If you have a miscarriage or an abortion in the first trimester of your pregnancy, you may start using this medicine right away. You do not need a second form of birth control. If you start this medicine 5 days or more after the miscarriage or abortion, you should use a second form of non-hormonal birth control for the first 7 days of your first pill cycle. If you have a miscarriage or abortion after the second trimester, you should wait for 4 weeks before starting this medicine. Use another form of birth control for the first 7 days of your first pill cycle if you use this medicine on a Sunday.

Do not drink grapefruit juice while you are using this medicine. Grapefruit juice may change the amount of this medicine that is absorbed in the body.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

Your doctor may ask you to begin your dose on the first day of your menstrual period (called Day 1 Start) or on the first Sunday after your menstrual period starts (called Sunday Start). When you begin on a certain day, it is important that you follow that schedule, even if you miss a dose. Do not change your schedule on your own. If the schedule that you use is not convenient, check with your doctor about changing it. For a Sunday start, you need to use another form of birth control (eg, condom, diaphragm, spermicide) for the first 7 days.

  • For oral dosage forms (tablets):
    • For contraception (to prevent pregnancy):
      • Adults and teenagers—One white tablet (active) taken at the same time each day for 21 consecutive days followed by one brown (inert) tablet daily for 7 days per menstrual cycle.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

Call your doctor or pharmacist for instructions.

  • If you miss one white active tablet in weeks 1, 2, or 3: Take the tablet as soon as possible and take the next tablet at your regular schedule. Continue taking one tablet a day until you finish the pack.
  • If you miss two white active tablets in week 1 or 2: Take the two tablets as soon as possible and the next two tablets the next day. Continue taking one tablet a day until you finish the pack. Use a second form of birth control (eg, condom, spermicide) for 7 days after you miss a dose.
  • If you miss two white active tablets in week 3, or you miss three or more white active tablets in a row in weeks 1, 2, or 3:
    • Day 1 start: Throw out the rest of the pack and start a new pack that same day. Use a second form of birth control (eg, condom, spermicide) for 7 days after you miss a dose.
    • Sunday start: Continue taking one tablet a day until Sunday, then throw out the rest of the pack and start a new pack that same day. Use a second form of birth control (eg, condom, spermicide) for 7 days after you miss a dose, to prevent pregnancy.
  • You could have light bleeding or spotting if you do not take a pill on time. The more pills you miss, the more likely you are to have bleeding.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you miss your period 2 months in a row, because this could mean that you are pregnant.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.