- Take 1 pill every day, guided by included weekday stickers
- 99% effective when taken correctly
- Need yearly blood pressure and weight checks
Take 1 tablet every day at the same time.
Each strip contains 26 coloured active tablets and 2 white inactive tablets. Choose the weekday sticker that starts with the day you begin taking Qlaira. If you start on a Wednesday, use the 'WED' sticker. Stick to the strip so that the first day is above the pill marked '1'.
There is now a day shown above every tablet to help you keep track. Follow the direction of the arrow on the wallet until all 28 tablets have been taken. Start the next strip the next day.
Usually, your period starts when you are taking the second dark red tablet or the white tablets.
How it works
Qlaira contains 28 pills per pack: 4 types of active pills, (2 dark yellow, 5 medium red, 17 light yellow, and 2 dark red) as well as 2 white, inactive pills. Each of the active tablets has different levels of hormones in them, and must be taken in the prescribed order for the pill to remain effective.
The active hormones are estradiol and dienogest. These 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 Qlaira?
When taken correctly, Qlaira is 99% effective in preventing pregnancy. If it’s not always taken correctly roughly 9 out of 100 women will get pregnant.
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.
Please note – you should only start Qlaira if you’re sure you’re not pregnant.
How long after taking Qlaira are you protected?
If you start using Qlaira on days 1-5 of your period, you should be protected from pregnancy immediately, provided you don’t have a short or irregular menstrual cycle.
If you start after day 1 and have short/irregular menstrual cycle you’ll need to use condoms for 7 days if you have sex. Your clinician will be able to advise if you need to use extra contraception in the first 7 days if you have sex.
Many women do not experience any side effects, however some will. These can include feeling sick, tummy pain, breast discomfort, irregular bleeding or headaches. 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 you miss your active pill (these are coloured)
Missing one of the white inactive pills should not compromise contraception. Discard the missed inactive pill and continue the pack as normal. You will still be protected.
If you miss an active pill, take it as soon as you remember (this may mean taking 2 pills in a day) and then continue the pill packet daily. Don't take more than 2 active pills in one day.
If you are less than 12 hours late when taking an active pill, take it as soon as you remember. Then continue taking the tablets again at the usual time. You will still be protected against pregnancy.
If you are more than 12 hours late taking a pill, the protection against pregnancy may be reduced. The next steps depends on when you last took your pill and where you are in your pill packet. Please read the patient information leaflet for further information, or send us a message via your Patient Record.
Can I buy Qlaira online?
You can request and pay for a Qlaira prescription online. As this pill is a prescription-only medication, even if you are using an online service, you will need a prescription from a clinician before you can buy the treatment.
With all combined contraceptive pills, we will need to know your height, weight and blood pressure to prescribe safely. You can fill this out during the consultation. If you don’t know your blood pressure, don’t worry, you can have this checked in your local LloydsPharmacy.
Important information about Qlaira
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 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. If you’ve had your blood pressure checked recently, or checked it yourself using a home blood pressure monitor, you can give us this information as part of your consultation. Alternatively, you can have these checked when you pick up your prescription in your local LloydsPharmacy.
Safety: taking other medicines
You should be able to take Qlaira 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 Qlaira 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.