Loestrin tablets contain the hormones oestrogen and progestogen.
Loestrin 20 stops the release of eggs, thickens the fluid in the neck of womb making it harder for sperm to enter the womb and prevents the egg embedding in the womb lining.
The Loestrin 20 contraceptive pill is called a ‘combined contraceptive pill’ because it contains two types of medicines:
Norethisterone Acetate: a hormone known as a ‘progestogen’.
Ethinylestradiol: a hormone known as an ‘oestrogen’.
These hormones are similar to those produced naturally by the female body during pregnancy.
Loestrin tablets will prevent you from becoming pregnant in the following ways:
Stop eggs being released for fertilisation.
Making it difficult for sperm to enter the womb by thickening the fluid found in the neck of the womb.
Prevents the womb lining thickening, this prevents a fertilised egg from embedding itself.
Always take the Loestrin 20 contraceptive pill exactly as your doctor instructs you.
Take this medicine by mouth.
Swallow the tablets whole with a drink of water.
Do not crush or chew your tablets.
Take one Loestrin 20 tablet per day.
Take the tablet at about the same time of day for 21 days (Loestrin tablets are marked with each day of the week, this will help you remember to take one tablet for these 21 days).
Once you have taken all 21 tablets, stop taking Loestrin 20 for 7 days.
You should have a period after a few days of taking your last tablet.
You do not need to use any additional contraceptive protection during these 7 days, provided all of the tablets have been taken correctly.
After the 7 day break and on the same day of the week that you started your previous pack, start your next pack of Loestrin 20.
Consult your Patient Information Leaflet for further details about taking the Loestrin 20.
The active substances in Loestrin 20 are norethisterone acetate 1.0mg and ethinylestradiol 0.02mg. The other ingredients in the tablet are: sugar (sucrose), lactose, maize starch, talc, powdered acacia and magnesium stearate.
The tablet coating contains hypromellose 15, hydroxypropylcellulose, carnauba wax and the colourings quinoline yellow (E104), erythrosine FD&C Red (E127), indigo carmine (E132) and titanium dioxide (E171).
You should consult your Patient Information Leaflet for more details about the possible risks and side effects of taking Loestrin tablets.
Do not take Loestrin 20 if:
• You are allergic (hypersensitive) to norethisterone acetate, ethinylestradiol or any of the other ingredients of Loestrin 20.
• You are pregnant, think you might be pregnant or are trying to become pregnant.
• You are breastfeeding.
• You are overweight.
• You have ever been told that you have breast cancer or cancer of the lining of the womb.
• You, or any member of your family, have ever had blood clots (including heart attack or stroke).
• You have had bleeding from your vagina of unknown cause.
• You have ever had a problem with clotting of your blood or high levels of fat or cholesterol in your blood.
• You have a problem with your red blood cells (called ‘sickle cell anaemia’).
• You have ever had high blood pressure (hypertension) or other problems of the heart and blood vessels.
• You have severe headaches (migraine) or have ever had a small stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA).
• You have had any of the following problems during a pregnancy:
- a yellowing of the skin and the whites of your eyes (jaundice);
- itching of the whole body (pruritus of pregnancy);
- a nerve problem which causes jerky movements of the muscles (chorea);
- a blister-like rash called pemphigoid gestationis;
- your deafness getting worse (otosclerosis);
• You have ever had a yellowing of the skin and the whites of your eyes (jaundice) while taking an oral contraceptive in the past;
• You have liver problems including:
- a type of jaundice (Dubin-Johnson or Rotor syndromes);
- swelling of the liver (hepatitis);
- high levels of blood fats such as cholesterol or triglycerides porphyria, liver tumour or gallstones;
• You have ever had depression;
• You have diabetes;
•You have asthma;
• You have kidney problems;
• You have epilepsy or any other problem that can cause fits (convulsions);
• You have fibroids of the womb;
• You have a form of deafness called ‘otosclerosis’;
• You have a muscle problem caused by lower than normal levels of the mineral calcium in the blood (tetany).
Do not take Loestrin 20 if any of the above apply to you - talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking Loestrin 20.
Loestrin 20 can affect the way some medicines work. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking or have recently taken any other medicines including medicines obtained without a prescription, including herbal medicines. Do not take the herbal medicine called St. John’s Wort while taking Loestrin 20. Tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following medicines:
• Medicines for epilepsy such as carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin or primidone
• Medicines for infections such as ampicillin, griseofulvin or rifampicin.
• Atorvastatin for high cholesterol
• Vitamin C preparations.
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