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    Side effects of ellaOne

    On this page
    1. What is ellaOne?
    2. How to take ellaOne
    3. ellaOne side effects
    4. Can ellaOne delay your period?
    5. Treating ellaOne side effects
    6. How do you know if ellaOne has worked?
    7. Where can I get ellaOne?

    Like all medications, ellaOne may cause some side effects, although these tend to be rare. In this article we’ll look at the potential side effects of ellaOne and treating any side effects if you do experience them. 

    What is ellaOne?

    ellaOne is a morning after pill taken after unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. The other types of emergency contraception that are available are Levonorgestrel (also a pill) and the emergency copper coil, or IUD which has to be implanted by a professional. You can learn more about the IUD by reading this article from the NHS.

    How to take ellaOne

    ellaOne must be taken within five days (120 hours) of unprotected sex to prevent unwanted pregnancy. It is thought to be about 95% effective in protecting against unwanted pregnancy for all five days. This makes it more effective after the initial 24 hours than the more commonly used morning after pill, Levonorgestrel (sometimes branded Levonelle).

    ellaOne side effects

    All medications can cause some side effects, although these aren't very common with ellaOne.  

    Most common side effects of ellaOne

    • Nausea
    • Tender breasts
    • Headaches
    • Mood swings
    • Tiredness

    Rare side effects of ellaOne

    There are some side effects associated with taking ellaOne that are slightly less common, we have listed them below.

    Uncommon side effects of ellaOne (affecting up to 1 in 100 people):

    • diarrhoea and wind
    • heartburn
    • dry mouth
    • irregular vaginal bleeding (i.e. between periods)
    • heavy periods and prolonged PMS
    • vaginal irritation or unusual discharge
    • changes to your appetite and sex drive
    • hot flushes
    • anxiety or agitation
    • trouble sleeping
    • sleepiness
    • migraine
    • visual disturbances
    • acne
    • itchy skin

    Though many of these side effects are unpleasant, none of them should be cause for great alarm. They should also last for a short amount of time.

    Note: The side effects of any medicine are always available in the patient information Leaflet that comes in the box.

    Can ellaOne delay your period?

    The morning after pill can affect your period, making it earlier, later or more heavy than usual. You should bear in mind, if your period is more than seven days late, extremely light or heavy, or you experience abdominal (stomach) pain, breast tenderness, vomiting or nausea, you may be pregnant and you should do a test. 

    Treating ellaOne side effects

    Some of the side effects can be confused with pregnancy symptoms or complications of an ectopic pregnancy, so if you are suffering from any side effects after taking ellaOne, you should tell your doctor or pharmacist, even if the side effect is not listed here. Once you feel more comfortable, you can also make a report to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). This helps medical professionals to keep track of any adverse effects medicines might have.

    In rare cases, some people who take ellaOne have an allergic reaction to one of the ingredients in the tablet and require immediate medical attention. If you have a reaction like this you should call 999, 111, go to your local A&E or urgent care centre. 

    You can find out the ingredients in ellaOne and check whether you might be allergic to it by reading the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine.

    How do you know if ellaOne has worked?

    You will know if ellaOne has worked if your next period arrives. As mentioned above if it is more than 7 days late, unusually light or heavy, you experience symptoms such as abdominal (stomach) pain, breast tenderness, vomiting or nausea, you may be pregnant. You should do a pregnancy test right away. 

    Where can I get ellaOne?

    You can get ellaOne from sexual health centres, GP surgeries, pharmacies and contraception clinics. Alternatively, you can order it online from discreet, confidential health services like LloydsPharmacy Online Doctor. Click here to learn more about ellaOne or make an order through our safe online clinic.


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