Upostelle

  • Levonorgestrel

Upostelle is an emergency contraceptive pill, made by Gedeon Richter. It is a back-up pill designed to be taken when a primary method has not properly functioned.

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1500mcg

This medication comes as one tablet, which contains 1500 micrograms of levonorgestrel. It is a one-time treatment, which should be taken within 72 hours of unprotected intercourse.

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Upostelle is a morning after pill distributed in the UK by Consilient Healthcare. It is a generic version of the same treatment made by Bayer, called Levonelle, and contains an active ingredient which interferes with ovulation and prevents the release of an egg. The product also makes it harder for sperm to reach an egg by increasing the density of vaginal mucus.

  1. Effectiveness rate of 84%
  2. Needs to be taken within 72 hours
  3. One-time tablet

In this treatment is a high dose of the synthetic hormone levonorgestrel. This functions in a similar way to progesterone, which is a naturally-occurring hormone in the body. This hormone regulates the preparations the body undergoes to increase its conduciveness to pregnancy. Levels of the hormone go up and down each month, and this results in a triggering of these processes.

Ovulation takes place when levels of progesterone fall, and an egg is released into the womb where it is ready for fertilisation by male sperm. The functioning constituent in Upostelle works by supplementing the levels of this hormone as they fall, and this effectively convinces the body that ovulation has already happened, and does not need to take place.

An added function of this product is that it increases the thickness of cervical fluid. Sperm needs to pass through the cervix in order to reach its target, and once this fluid has been made thicker, sperm cannot move through as easily.

Primary hormonal contraception, or the regular pill, is an effective way of stopping pregnancy from beginning. But, for one reason or another, people can forget to take it, or miss their scheduled dose. Similarly, while barrier contraception such as condoms tend to be reliable, it is possible for them to become damaged or ripped during sex, leading to unprotected intercourse.

To prevent pregnancy in these cases, the morning after tablet, or plan B pill, can be a useful choice. Upostelle should be taken as quickly as possible after intercourse has taken place. In order to be optimally sufficient, this would be within 12 hours of unprotected sex, but it should certainly be no later than 72 hours (or 3 days) afterwards. The sooner you take the morning after pill, the more effective it is likely to be. When used correctly, it can be 84% effective at stopping pregnancy from beginning. Prior to use, you will need to be sure that you are not already pregnant.

You should discuss the risks of STIs with your GP after a barrier method has failed during sex. STI testing may be recommended in some cases.

In addition, if you are not using long-term contraception such as the hormonal pill, then your doctor can provide you with more guidance on the potential benefits of this.

Please note that we do not provide this pill through our site.

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How to use Upostelle

It is essential to keep to the guidelines your prescriber issues when using this product. Doing this, and following the instructions supplied in the patient information leaflet, will help you to reduce the risk of side effects and optimise the efficacy of the treatment.

  1. Take as directed by your doctor.
  2. This will be one tablet, taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex (ideally within 12 hours) but no later than 72 hours (3 days) afterwards.
  3. It is more effective the sooner it is taken.
  4. Swallow the tablet whole, taking it with water if you need to.
  5. You may need to make a follow up appointment with your doctor a couple of weeks after you have taken this pill to check that it has worked.
  6. Once taken, you can resume your regular method of hormonal contraception as normal.
  7. Do not take this medicine if you are already pregnant or suspect you may be. If you are unsure, take a pregnancy test, or speak to your doctor.
  8. If you are sick after taking this medicine, ask your doctor for advice.

The above is intended as a guide only. Before using this product, you should familiarise yourself with the instructions in the patient information leaflet.

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Upostelle side effects

This medication, like any other, may cause side effects. It is important to be aware of these so that you can act accordingly in the event that they occur. If you become concerned or experience any serious side effects, you should notify your doctor right away.

Very common (1 in 10 women or more):
Irregular bleeding during periods, feeling or being sick, pain in the lower abdomen, tiredness, or headache.

Common (1 in 10 women or less):
Later period than normal, tender breasts, diarrhoea, or dizziness.

Very rare (1 in 10,000 people or less):
Rash, urticaria, itching, swelling in the face, pelvic discomfort, or painful periods.

The information provided here is intended only as a guide. A more detailed index of side effects can be found in the leaflet which comes with the pill.

Taking it with other medicines

Your prescriber needs to know if you are using any other treatments during consultation. Upostelle may interact with treatments such as: barbiturates; those for epilepsy, for instance carbamazepine; St John’s wort; those for tuberculosis including rifampicin and rifabutin; some used for HIV infections, like ritonavir; griseofulvin; or ciclosporin.

Conditions to look out for

The presence of some conditions may mean that Upostelle is not suitable for you, so you should disclose your medical history to your prescriber before use. Do not take it if you have or have ever had the following: Crohn’s disease; severe liver problems; ectopic pregnancy; or salpingitis.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

If you are already pregnant, do not take this pill.

If you become pregnant after using this pill, see your doctor. There is no evidence to suggest that Upostelle will harm a pregnancy when taken as directed. However, your doctor may need to check that the pregnancy is not developing ectopically.

Speak to your doctor for advice before taking this medication if you are breastfeeding. It is recommended that you avoid breastfeeding for 8 hours after taking the treatment.

Please refer to the more detailed information in the leaflet supplied for more guidance.

Driving and using machinery

The effects of this medication on driving and machine use have not been observed.

Lactose intolerance

Upostelle contains lactose. Tell your prescriber if you are intolerant to any sugars.

Q&A: our Upostelle discussion forum

Can I still drink alcohol?

Yes. You can continue to drink alcohol while using Upostelle.

Will I still be able to drive?

Yes. It should not affect your driving ability. However, if you notice any side effects which may interfere with your driving, you should not drive and let your doctor know.

Can I take the medicine while pregnant?

No. Do not take it if you are already pregnant or suspect you could be. Before using it, you may need to complete a pregnancy test. Those who are breastfeeding are advised not to nurse for at least 8 hours after taking it.

How should I store it?

In a secure environment, out of the reach of children and away from excessive light or moisture sources.

Am I allergic to anything in the medicine?

In this product are the following ingredients: levonorgestrel, potato starch, maize starch, silica, colloidal anhydrous, magnesium, talc and lactose monohydrate. Avoid taking it if you are allergic to any of these substances.

Is it available over-the-counter?

A prescription is required for the purchase of Upostelle. This is so that a healthcare professional can make sure it is suitable for you prior to use.

Is it right for me?

Speak to your GP or family planning clinic to find out. They will be able to discuss the different pills with you, and determine which is the most suitable.

Please note that we do not offer the morning after pill through site.

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