Levonelle is an emergency contraceptive pill that works to prevent pregnancy in women who have had unprotected sex, either because they did not use contraception or because their regular method failed. It can be up to 98% effective when taken during the first 12 hours thanks to its active ingredient levonorgestrel, which works as a synthetic version of the female hormone progestogen.
As with all prescription medications, Levonelle can cause some side effects. Levonorgestrel mimics the action of progestogen by tricking the body into thinking that ovulation has already occurred. This causes changes to the menstrual cycle, which has a different effect on different people and in some women can cause certain unpleasant side effects.
The side effects should not last very long after the medication is taken. If they persist or become bothersome you should consult a doctor, as you may be suffering from an underlying condition or be allergic to one of its ingredients.
Mild headaches are a common side effect for many prescription medications, including Levonelle. Dizziness and feelings of fatigue may also occur temporarily.Gastric
Vomiting may occur after taking Levonelle. If this is the case, you should speak to a doctor for advice as the pill may not have been effective. Nausea is a commonly reported side effect of this medication.Gynaecological
You may notice that your periods become disrupted after taking this medication, and you may experience spotting or abnormal vaginal bleeding.Breast
You may notice that your breasts become tender for a short time after taking Levonelle.
The common side effects that can occur after taking this medication affect between one in every 10 and 100 women who use Levonelle.
Uncommon side effects will affect between one in every 100 and 1,000 women who take the medication.
The only reported side effect that can be considered very rare (meaning that it affects less than one in every 1,000 women) is skin reactions, which can include itching, swelling and rashes.
Most women will not experience all of the possible side effects that can occur if you take Levonelle. However, if your period is late or substantially heavier or lighter than usual you should consult a doctor. It is recommended that you see a doctor three weeks after taking the medication to ensure it has not had any negative effects.
If any of these side effects persist or become troublesome you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible. A more detailed description of all the reported side effects that can occur in women who use Levonelle is printed on the patient information leaflet supplied with the medication. This leaflet should be read carefully before the medication is taken. If you suffer from a side effect that is not listed, you should inform a healthcare professional as soon as possible.