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What is it?

Many clinics use Schering PC4 which is a contraceptive pill designed to be used for the occasional emergency when sexual intercourse has taken place without protection.

Each pack contains 4 white sugar-coated hormone tablets.

How do I take them?

Take 2 pills followed by another 2 pills 8 -12 hours later.

Take them AFTER food. Leave no longer than 12 hours between the two doses. If you are late taking the 2nd dose take it as soon as you remember and contact the clinic or G.P. for advice as soon as possible.

How does it work?

It is wrongly called the ‘morning after’ pill by some people. As long as it is started within 72 hours (3 days) of unprotected sex it will prevent a pregnancy by stopping a fertilised egg attaching itself to the lining of the womb.

How effective is it?

It is difficult to know how many pregnancies have been stopped by using PC4 but safe to say that very few women go on to become pregnant after using it correctly.

There are no proven risks to the unborn child if pregnancy should continue after emergency contraception.

How often can I use PC4?

It should only really be used for emergency purposes. It would be better to discuss other options of long term contraception if you find yourself regularly needing emergency contraception.

Are there any side effects?

The most likely ones are nausea and vomiting. If you vomit within 2 hours of taking the first two tablets you will need to take 2 extra pills and contact the clinic or a G.P. as soon as possible.

Breast discomfort and headaches may also be experienced.

Can I have sex?

Yes, but you must use a condom or cap.

Where can I get further help?

Your local GUM Clinic, Contraception and Sexual Health Service (Family Planning Clinic) or G.P should be able to offer advice.

Also: Birth Control Trust.    email  bct@birthcontroltrust.org.uk

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