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Evra Patch

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What is the Evra patch?

The Evra patch is a hormone-releasing contraceptive patch that sticks to the skin. It is a small and discreet patch that prevents conception by releasing the synthetic hormones oestrogen and progestogen. One patch is applied each week (7 days) for three weeks in a row, followed by a week without the patch.

In a single transdermal patch, Evra contains 6mg norelgestromin and 600 micrograms ethinyl estradiol.

How does the Evra contraceptive patch work?

Evra contraceptive patches contain synthetic oestrogens and progesterone, similar to the hormones already made by your body, which are absorbed into the body through the skin -. These hormones work to prevent pregnancy.

The Evra patch acts similarly to the combined birth control pill, slowly releasing the required hormone dose for absorption (through the skin):

  • Because Evra contains two hormones, it is known as a 'combined hormonal contraceptive', which works primarily by preventing the release of an egg (ovulation) during your menstrual cycle.
  • In addition to blocking ovulation, it thickens the cervical mucus from your cervix, making it harder for sperm to reach your egg.
  • It also thins the uterine lining and makes the womb less likely to accept fertilised eggs

How effective is the Evra patch?

Evra is more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy when used correctly, which means that less than 1 in 100 women who use tha patch will become pregnant. Common reasons contraceptive patches fail include replacing the patches too late and applying patches incorrectly.

How do I use an Evra patch?

Always follow your doctor's advice and read the package leaflet provided in the pack. The patch is recommended to be worn for seven consecutive days for three weeks, followed by a week without use. This is called a patch cycle.

Use one patch at a time for each week cycle:

  • Week 1: Apply one patch to clean, dry, hairless skin. Keep the patch on for 7 days.
  • Week 2: Change the patch on the seventh day of the week - remove the old patch. After removing the patch, apply a new one immediately. Keep this patch on for seven days.
  • Week 3: Apply a new patch and remove the old one immediately. Leave this patch on for seven days.
  • Patch-free week: After three weeks of continuous patch use, a 7-day break from the patch should be taken. You’ll have a withdrawal bleed (which isn't always present).

When should the Evra contraceptive patch be applied?

This method of contraception can be started at any time during your cycle as long as you are not pregnant. However, the first patch may not work straight away depending on when you apply it. The first patch will be effective:

  • immediately - if you apply it on the first day of your period
  • immediately - if you apply within the first five days of your period (provided your menstrual cycle is not very short or irregular)
  • after 7 days - if you begin the contraceptive patch at any other time during your cycle. If you have sex during the first 7 days you will need to use other contraception, such as condoms. Condoms may also be needed if you are concerned about sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

What is the best place to apply the patch?

Patches can be applied to most parts of the body as long as the skin is clean, dry, and not too hairy such as the buttocks, abdomen, upper outer arm, or upper torso.

Where to apply the patch:

buttocks buttocks
abdomen abdomen
upper outer arm upper outer arm
upper outer arm upper torso

You should also:

  • avoid putting the patch on skin that is sore, irritated, or where tight clothing can rub
  • not use it on your breast
  • whenever possible, avoid the areas where lotions, creams, and makeup will be applied

If you experience irritation when using the patch for the first time, you can change the placement the next time you use it.

What happens if my patch comes off?

It is possible for the patch to fall off the skin before the week is up, in which case you may not be as protected from pregnancy.

  • You can go up to 24 hours without a patch, but you should reapply it straight away or put on a new patch straight away. Your 'patch change day' will remain the same.
  • Do not attempt to replace the same patch if it is no longer sticky, if it is stuck to something else, or if it has fallen off before.
  • Uncertain patch time or more than 24 hours without a patch - start a new patch immediately.

Use additional contraception, such as condoms, if you haven't worn the patch for 7 days straight. If you have had unprotected sex, you should consider the morning-after pill. For more information, check out our page about emergency contraception.

Who cannot use the Evra patch?

It is generally safe for most women to use the Evra patch - however, there are some circumstances in which it is not appropriate. Women with the following conditions may not be able to use the Evra patch:

  • over the age of 35 (especially smokers or those who have recently quit smoking)
  • smokers
  • diabetes
  • prone to severe migraines
  • overweight - the patch may not be as effective if you weigh more than 90kg
  • pregnant or breastfeeding (there are other suitable contraceptive methods available for those breastfeeding)
  • taking certain medications
  • allergic to norelgestromin, ethinylestradiol, or any other Evra ingredients
  • vein or artery clots (or family members with a medical history of blood clots)
  • have had thrombosis previously
  • breast cancer or you carry a gene that causes breast cancer
  • high blood pressure
  • certain conditions that increase the likelihood of a blood clot (such as systemic lupus erythematosus)

Fortunately, we provide a range of alternatives to contraception that may be suitable for you, such as vaginal ring (NuvaRing), contraceptive pills (combined pills and mini pills).

Are Evra patches suitable as emergency contraception?

You should not use the patch as emergency contraception. If you've had sex without contraception, or believe your method might've failed, other methods can be used instead, such as the morning-after pill or the IUD (intrauterine device)

What are the side effects of the Evra patch?

As with most hormonal contraception forms, you may experience temporary side effects during the first few months of using the patch.

The most common side effects reported include:

  • Headaches
  • Skin irritation
  • Nausea
  • Mood changes
  • Breast tenderness
  • Breakthrough bleeding and spotting (unexpected vaginal bleeding while using the patch)

There is an increased risk of blood clots with this form of contraception than others. Rarely, the patch may cause venous thrombosis, arterial thrombosis, heart attack, or stroke in a very small percentage of users. For a full description of side effects, please refer to the patient information leaflet. If you suspect any side effects, speak to your doctor.

Are birth control patches associated with weight gain?

Evra contraceptive patch weight gain is not common. Research into the hormones in the contraceptive patch has shown no connection between the patch and weight gain or weight loss. It is possible for your weight to fluctuate throughout your cycle as a result of fluid retention.

Are there any advantages to the Evra patch?

If you want the benefits of combined hormonal contraceptive methods without having to remember to take a pill each day, this product may be right for you. The patch has several other advantages, including:

  • unlike pills, the hormones in a patch are not absorbed by the stomach, so even if you vomit or have diarrhoea, effectiveness will remain the same
  • withdrawal bleeding will probably become lighter and less painful
  • it can alleviate some premenstrual symptoms
  • it might help with acne in some cases
  • the patch is discreet and small
  • a great option for women who don't want to take pills every day

Additionally, the contraceptive patch may help prevent conditions such as anaemia (iron deficiency), bone thinning, cysts in the ovaries and breasts, as well as some types of cancer.

Where can I get Evra patches in the UK?

Some GPs and most sexual health clinics in the UK offer the Evra patch, which is not available over-the-counter, but you can also order it online. Order your Evra patch at euroClinix without the hassle of making an appointment with your doctor. All you need is to fill out a brief online questionnaire about your health. Upon approval by our healthcare professionals, your Evra patches will be dispensed and dispatched with free delivery in the UK. We provide unbranded, discrete packaging for all deliveries, and our support and medical teams are always available to answer any questions.

Note: You must complete a short online consultation so that our doctor can ensure that the treatment is suitable for you. The above pricing should only be used as a reference. The final decision to issue this treatment lies with the prescribing doctor.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Caroline Fontana Written by our editorial team Last reviewed 17-01-2024
Evra Patch information
Product nameEvra
Active ingredient(s)Ethinylestradiol and Norelgestromin
Trustpilot rating4.7/5
Trustpilot reviews106
AvailabilityOut of stock
DescriptionEvra patch offers an effective alternative for those looking for contraception. It is proven to be 99% effective
ExemptionSubject to medical prescription
Available dosage203mcg/34mcg/24hrs
ApplicationOffering protection against pregnancy for women over 18
UsageApply 1 patch every 7 days for 21 days followed by a 7 day break
Drug classCombined patches
Alcohol consumptionNo influence
When breastfeedingNot recommended, ask your doctor for alternatives
When pregnantNot recommended, ask your doctor for alternatives
Evra Patch reviews
Pack of Evra® transdermal 9 patches Excellent 4.7 106 patients have reviewed Evra Patch on Trustpilot
18 Dec

This product is very good

Rosália Frank Oliveira

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