- Daily progestogen-only tablet
- 99% effective when taken correctly
- Suitable for smokers and over-35s
How to take Cerelle
Take 1 pill every day, at the same time. Take the packs back-to-back without a break, including during your period. Many women won’t have their period at all while on Cerelle – this is normal and should not cause concern.
How does Cerelle work?
Cerelle is a form of progestogen-only mini pill. Its active ingredient is desogestrel, which is a synthetic version of the hormone progesterone. Cerelle is prescribed to sexually active women who do not want to get pregnant. It's the generic version of Cerazette - it contains the same active ingredient and works in the same way.
How effective is Cerelle?
If you start using Cerelle on days 1-5 of your period, you will be immediately protected against pregnancy.
Used correctly, Cerelle can be up to 99% effective in preventing pregnancy. However, if you are vomiting or have severe diarrhoea you may not be protected against pregnancy. If this happens, continue to take the pill as usual but use a condom whilst you're ill. If this continues for more than 24 hours you should follow the same steps as a missed pill.
What are the side effects of Cerelle?
Most women will not experience any side effects on Cerelle, but some report irregular bleeding - this usually settles within 3 months. Other side effects can include headaches, acne, feeling sick, mood swings, and breast sensitivity.
For full information on side effects and correct use, see the patient information leaflet. If any side effects concern you, contact us via your Patient Record.
What should I do if I miss the pill?
If you forget to take it, unlike most mini pills, Cerelle offers a window of 12 hours in which it can be taken and still protect you from pregnancy. Take the forgotten pill as soon as you remember. Then take the next pill at the normal time. This may mean taking 2 pills in one day.
If you do not take it within 12hrs of the usual time, you will not be protected against pregnancy. Continue to take your pills as usual but use condoms for the next two days. If you've had unprotected sex during this time, you may need emergency contraception.
Can smokers use Cerelle?
Cerelle, as a progestogen-only pill, is suitable for smokers, and is therefore a good alternative to the combined contraceptive pill.
Will Cerelle affect my weight?
There is no evidence that the progestogen-only pill, like Cerelle, will cause women to put on weight. You may find your weight changes throughout your cycle due to fluid retention and other reasons not related to the pill.
Can I buy Cerelle online?
You can request and pay for a Cerelle prescription online. As this pill is a prescription-only medication, even if you are using an online doctor, you will need a prescription from a clinician before you can buy Cerelle online. You should never buy the contraceptive pill online without a prescription from a regulated health service with professionally qualified and registered clinicians.
Can Cerelle stop periods?
Cerelle is taken everyday without a break. For some women their periods stop altogether with this pill, whereas for others their periods may continue regularly, or become lighter and less frequent.
How do I switch to Cerelle from a different pill?
If you would like to switch your contraceptive pill to Cerelle, you can contact us via your Patient Record or get an appointment with your GP. If you are changing to a new pill usually you will be advised to have no break between the packs and you may have to use other contraceptive methods during the changeover.
Important information about Cerelle
If you’ve already bought your pill from us, you can request a further 3, 6 or 12-month supply from your Patient Record, if you're medically suitable. If you want to change your pill, please send us a message in your Patient Record.
Safety: taking other medicines
You should be able to take Cerelle alongside other medicines. However, it is important that you let us know which prescription, over-the-counter medicines and recreational drugs you are taking so that we can prescribe Cerelle safely.
We offer a range of contraceptives, including NuvaRing, Evra Patch, combined pills, low-dose pills and mini pills. View all our contraception options.
Condoms are an effective form of contraception and protect against STIs.
There are also long-acting contraceptives available through your GP or family planning clinic, including implants, the coil and injectable contraception.