What is Levonelle One Step?
Levonelle One Step is an emergency contraceptive that can be used after unprotected sex or where a contraceptive method has failed. This type of contraception is often called ‘the morning after pill’.
Each pack of Levonelle One Step contains a complete treatment which is one round, white tablet. The tablet contains 1500 microgram of levonorgestrel, which is the active ingredient.
Levonelle One Step also contains the inactive ingredients: potato starch, maize starch, colloidal silica anhydrous, magnesium stearate (E572), talc (E533b), lactose monohydrate.
How does the Levonelle morning after pill work?
Levonelle One Step prevents about 84% of expected pregnancies when it is taken within 72 hours (3 days) of unprotected sex. Levonelle One Step will not prevent a pregnancy in every instance, but the tablet is more effective the sooner after unprotected sex it is taken (it is better to take it within 12 hours rather than delay until the third day).
The Levonelle One Step morning after pill is thought to work by:
- stopping your ovaries from releasing an egg
- preventing sperm from fertilising any egg you may have already released; or
- stopping a fertilised egg from attaching itself to your womb lining.
So Levonelle One Step stops a pregnancy before it is established. It does not work if you are already pregnant.
Before you take Levonelle One Step.
Please talk to your pharmacist before you take this medicine because emergency contraception might not be suitable for you. Call us up on 0844 357 0115 if in doubt and ask to speak to one of our pharmacists.
Levonelle One Step contains 142.5 mg lactose. This should be taken into account if you have been told by your doctor that you have an intolerance to some sugars.
If you are under 16, you must visit your doctor or family planning clinic to get emergency contraception.
You can use Levonelle One Step at any time during your menstrual cycle, except if your period is late. If your period is late, you should tell your pharmacist.
Before you take this medicine, your pharmacist may check that you are not already pregnant by asking you questions about your periods or when you had sex. If you or your pharmacist think that you might already be pregnant, you will need to have a pregnancy test.
When you should not use the Levonelle morning after pill.
Do not use Levonelle One Step if:
- you know you have an allergy to any of the ingredients of this medicine.
You should contact your doctor for advice about emergency contraception if:
- you have a disease of your small bowel (such as Crohn’s disease) that interferes with the digestion of your food;
- you have severe liver problems;
- you are taking any of the medicines listed below, as these medicines may prevent Levonelle One Step from working properly
Barbiturates and other medicines used to treat epilepsy (for example, primidone, phenytoin, and carbamazepine).
Medicines used to treat tuberculosis (for example, rifampicin, rifabutin).
A treatment for HIV infection (ritonavir).
A medicine used to treat fungal infections (griseofulvin).
Herbal remedies containing St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum)
you are taking a medicine called cyclosporin (used to help the immune system).
If any of these apply to you, Levonelle One Step may not be suitable for you, or other types of emergency contraception may be better for you.
If you are pregnant.
You should not take this medicine if you are already pregnant. If you have had unprotected sex which was more than 72 hours ago, and since your last period, you may already be pregnant and the treatment won’t work. If your last period was more than 5 days late or was unusually light or unusually heavy, you should check with your doctor that you are not already pregnant.
If you do become pregnant even after taking this medicine, it is important that you see your doctor. There is no evidence that Levonelle One Step will harm a baby that develops in your uterus/womb but your doctor may want to check that the pregnancy is not ectopic (where the baby develops somewhere outside the womb). This is especially important if you develop severe abdominal pain after taking Levonelle One Step or if you have previously had an ectopic pregnancy, Fallopian tube surgery or pelvic inflammatory disease.
When to take special care with Levonelle One Step.
If you are breast-feeding
Very small amounts of the active ingredient of this medicine may appear in your breast milk. This is not thought to be harmful to the baby, but if you are worried you can take your tablet immediately after a breast-feed. In this way you are taking your tablet well before the next feed and reducing the amount of active ingredient your baby may take in with the breast milk.
If you are taking any other medicines
Tell your pharmacist if you are taking any of the medicines listed in the section ‘You should contact your doctor for advice about emergency contraception…’.
If you are not sure about anything, check with your pharmacist, doctor, practice nurse or family planning clinic.
If you are worried about sexually transmitted diseases
This medicine will not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases, only condoms can do this. Ask your doctor, nurse, family planning clinic or pharmacist for advice if you are worried about this.