Levonorgestrel is also known as the morning after pill. You can take levonorgestrel to prevent pregnancy after having unprotected sex, or keep it for emergency use in future.(5)
Levonorgestrel is an oral emergency contraceptive pill manufactured by Lupin Healthcare (UK) Ltd.
Each levonorgestrel tablet contains 1.5mg of the active ingredient levonorgestrel and can be taken within 72 hours of having unprotected sex.
You can order levonorgestrel online and have it delivered or collect it from a nearby Asda Pharmacy. Fill in a short and confidential online questionnaire that will be reviewed by one of our doctors to check it’s right for you.
About Generic Levonelle
Who can take levonorgestrel?
Levonorgestrel can be used for up to 72 hours after having unprotected sex.
It works by stopping an egg being released from your ovaries, so if this has already happened levonorgestrel will not work. Ovulation happens 14 days before your period starts. The only emergency contraception that works after ovulation is the copper IUD (coil). Speak to a doctor if you think you might need this.
Levonorgestrel might not work as well if you have a high body weight for your height, also known as a body mass index (BMI). Speak to a pharmacist or doctor about this, the most effective emergency contraception would be the copper IUD (coil).
You should not take levonorgestrel if you:
- are pregnant or think you may be pregnant
- are allergic to any of the ingredients in levonorgestrel tablets
- are taking certain other medications
Check with a healthcare professional to find out if levonorgestrel is right for you. You can get levonorgestrel over the counter at your local Asda Pharmacy or you can order from Asda Online Pharmacy.
Levonorgestrel side effects
Levonorgestrel can cause side effects. You might experience:
Common side effects of levonorgestrel include:
- irregular vaginal bleeding
- abdominal pain
Uncommon side effects of levonorgestrel include:
- changes to your period
- breast tenderness
Rare side effects of levonorgestrel include:
- pelvic pain
- painful periods
You can read more about levonorgestrel’s side effects in your patient information leaflet that your tablet comes with. If you do get any side effects after taking levonorgestrel, please get in touch with your doctor straight away.
Levonorgestrel works best if you take it as soon as possible after having unprotected sex, but you can take it within 72 hours (3 days).
The active ingredient in levonorgestrel is a man made version of the female sex hormone progesterone (known as a progestogen).
Levonorgestrel works to prevent pregnancy by:
- stopping ovulation, which is the release of an egg from your ovaries
- preventing sperm from fertilising an egg that may have already been released
Levonorgestrel does not work if you’re already pregnant and does not protect against pregnancy if you have unprotected sex after taking it.
When you take levonorgestrel, you will not be protected against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). A reliable way to protect against STIs is to use condoms when having sex.
Levonorgestrel is almost the same as Levonelle. Both contain the exact same active ingredient levonorgestrel and in the same amount (1500mcg levonorgestrel). They work to prevent pregnancy in the same way, within 72 hours of unprotected sex.
They are made by different companies and contain different inactive ingredients. Levonelle is a brand name and levonorgestrel is a generic name.
EllaOne (ulipristal acetate) is different to Levonelle and levonorgestrel, as you can use it within 120 hours after unprotected sex.
Levonorgestrel can interact with other medicines and affect how well it works.
These medications include those that help treat:
- epilepsy, such as barbiturates, primidone, phenytoin, carbamazepine
- tuberculosis, such as rifampicin, rifabutin
- hiv, such as ritonavir, efavirenz
- fungal infections, such as griseofulvin
- low mood, such as St. John’s wort
So if you’ve taken any other medicines, drugs or herbal remedies in the past 4 weeks, let your doctor know before you take levonorgestrel. If you’re unable to take levonorgestrel, your doctor may suggest you use a copper intrauterine device (copper IUD).
To take levonorgestrel, swallow your tablet whole with water. You can take levonorgestrel on an empty stomach or after eating.
You should take levonorgestrel as soon as possible after having unprotected sex, preferably within 12 hours and no more than 72 hours after.
If you vomit within 3 hours of taking your levonorgestrel tablet, you will need to take another one to make sure you’ve absorbed enough of it to work.
You should not take levonorgestrel if you’re pregnant or think you may be pregnant.
If you breastfeed, it is possible for levonorgestrel to be found in breastmilk. The amount is very small and it is recommended that it is safe to continue breastfeeding after using levonorgestrel.
Which active ingredients does levonorgestrel contain?
The active ingredient in each levonorgestrel tablet is 1.5mg of levonorgestrel.
The other ingredients are lactose monohydrate, maize starch, povidone K30, silica and colloidal anhydrous. These ingredients are inactive and do not affect how levonorgestrel works.
Levonorgestrel contains lactose. If you’re intolerant to some sugars, get in touch with your doctor before taking levonorgestrel.
What does levonorgestrel look like?
Each levonorgestrel tablet is round and white in colour, with ‘LV1’ written on one side. Each levonorgestrel box contains a blister strip with either 1 or 2 tablets, depending on your order.
Information on the manufacturer
The marketing authorisation holder and manufacturer of Levonorgestrel is Lupin Healthcare (UK) Ltd., the Urban Building, 2nd floor, 3-9 Albert Street, Slough, Berkshire
SL1 2BE, United Kingdom
Dr Kathryn Basford
Dr Kathryn Basford is a qualified GP who works as a GP in London, as well as with ZAVA. She graduated from the University of Manchester and completed her GP training through Whipps Cross Hospital in London.Meet our doctors
Article created: 16 Sep 2021
Last reviewed: 16 Sep 2021
(Reviews are for ZAVA UK)
You might need emergency contraception if you’ve recently had unprotected sex and want to reduce your risk of getting pregnant. Asda Online Doctor by ZAVA offers a morning after pill service, which includes a variety of options.