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Loestrin 20 - Contraceptive pill
  • Take daily for 21 days, with a 7-day break (alternatives possible)
  • Lower dose of oestrogen can cause fewer side effects
  • Collect in-store with free BMI and blood pressure checks

Loestrin 20

Loestrin 20 is a low-dose combined contraceptive pill. It's 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.

Loestrin 20 - Contraceptive pill

Branded treatment

Strength
Pack size
Returning patient? Reorder
  • Take daily for 21 days, with a 7-day break (alternatives possible)
  • Lower dose of oestrogen can cause fewer side effects
  • Collect in-store with free BMI and blood pressure checks

COVID-19 service update

During the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic we are working hard to ensure that our pharmacies are able to provide services, care and advice to you as safely as possible. When you visit us for a service, things might be a little different.

We are trying to ensure we manage social distancing in stores, so we may ask you to wait just a minute or two before you enter the pharmacy. When providing services, our pharmacy team will be wearing PPE. The PPE they wear will depend on the service being carried out, but colleagues will always be wearing a face mask. If you book a service that requires the consultation room, don’t worry, it will be cleaned before and after each service appointment - you may be asked for your consent to leave the door open to aid air flow but if you need extra privacy we don’t mind shutting the door. Lastly, when attending the pharmacy, please bring a face covering with you to use during the consultation.

During the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic we are working hard to ensure that our pharmacies are able to provide services, care and advice to you as safely as possible. When you visit us for a service, things might be a little different.

We are trying to ensure we manage social distancing in stores, so we may ask you to wait just a minute or two before you enter the pharmacy. When providing services, our pharmacy team will be wearing PPE. The PPE they wear will depend on the service being carried out, but colleagues will always be wearing a face mask. If you book a service that requires the consultation room, don’t worry, it will be cleaned before and after each service appointment - you may be asked for your consent to leave the door open to aid air flow but if you need extra privacy we don’t mind shutting the door. Lastly, when attending the pharmacy, please bring a face covering with you to use during the consultation.

About Loestrin 20

  • How to take Loestrin 20

    Most women choose to take 1 pill daily at the same time for 21 days. Once you finish a strip, take a 7-day break with no pills. During this time you may have a period. Start the next strip 7 days after your last pill. You will always start the next strip on the same day of the week.

    Loestrin 20 can also be taken as follows:
    Extended use: 1 pill a day for 9 weeks then no pills for the next 4 or 7 days.
    Continuous use: 1 pill a day every day with no break.

  • How does Loestrin 20 work?

    The hormones in Loestrin 20 (norethisterone and ethinylestradiol) prevent your ovaries from releasing an egg (ovulation). They also make it difficult for sperm to reach an egg, or for an egg to implant itself in the lining of the womb.

  • How effective is Loestrin 20?

    If you start using Loestrin 20 on days 1-5 of your period, you will be protected against pregnancy immediately. If you start taking it later (only if you are sure you could not be pregnant), you will need to use condoms for at least seven days until Loestrin 20 starts to work.

    When taken correctly, Loestrin 20 is 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?

    Many women do not experience any side effects, however some experience more irregular bleeding with a low-dose pill. This usually settles in a few months. Other side effects can include headaches, feeling sick, breast discomfort, or mood swings. In rare cases, some women develop blood clots or raised blood pressure.

    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?

    This depends on when and how many pills are missed. Missing one pill, at any time, does not compromise contraception. Missing two or more pills or starting a new pack late might affect your contraceptive cover.

    Up to 48hrs since your last pill – take your next pill as soon as you remember and continue the rest of the pack as usual. This might mean you need to take 2 pills on 1 day.

    More than 48hrs – this depends on when you last took your pill and where you are in your pill packet. Please check the patient information leaflet for further information.

  • Is Loestrin 20 safe to use whilst breastfeeding?

    If you’re breastfeeding, it’s not advised to start taking a combined contraceptive pill, like Loestrin 20, until 6 weeks after the birth. 

  • Can Loestrin 20 stop periods?

    If you take 2 packs of Loestrin 20 back-to-back, you can miss your period. 

  • Will Loestrin 20 affect my weight?

    There is no evidence to suggest that taking the combined contraceptive pill will affect your weight. You may find your weight changes throughout your cycle due to fluid retention and other reasons not related to the pill.

  • Important information about Loestrin 20

    If you’ve already bought your pill from us, you can request a further 3 or 6-month supply from your Patient Record, if you're medically suitable. If you want to change your pill, please send us a message via your Patient Record.

    Combined contraceptives can cause your blood pressure to rise, which can be dangerous. Your blood pressure needs checking before starting any combined contraceptive, then once a year after that. Your local LloydsPharmacy will measure your blood pressure for free.

  • Can I buy Loestrin 20 online?

    You cannot request and pay for a Loestrin 20 prescription online. This pill has been discontinued until further notice. 

  • Why was Loestrin discontinued?

    Loestrin 20 and 30 were discontinued as they are no longer being manufactured.

  • Safety: taking other medicines

    You should be able to take Loestrin 20 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 Loestrin 20 safely.

  • Alternative treatments

    We offer a range of contraceptives, including NuvaRing, Evra Patch, combined pills, low-dose pills and mini pills. View all our contraception options [link to cat].

    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.

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