- Up to 99% effective in preventing pregnancy
- Contains oestrogen and progestogen
- Easy to take
Rigevidon is a combined oral contraceptive pill, containing low doses of estrogen and progesterone, two female sex hormones.
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What is Rigevidon?
Rigevidon is a combined oral contraceptive pill containing levonorgestrel and ethinylestradiol.
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How do Combined Oral Contraceptives work?
The combined oral contraceptive pill is usually just called “the pill”. It contains the female hormones oestrogen and progesterone, which women produce naturally in their ovaries.
The Combined pill is over 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.
The usual way to take the pill is to take one every day for 21 days, then stop for seven days, and during this week you have a period-type bleed. You start taking the pill again after seven days.
You need to take the pill at around the same time every day. You could get pregnant if you don’t do this, or if you miss a pill, or vomit or have severe diarrhoea.
Some medicines may make the pill less effective. Check with your doctor if you’re taking any other tablets.
If you have heavy periods or painful periods, PMS (premenstrual syndrome) or endometriosis the combined pill may help.
The pill does not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), so using a condom as well will help to protect you against STIs.
It works by:
1) Prevents the ovaries from releasing an egg each month (ovulation).
2) Thickens the mucus in the neck of the womb, so it is harder for sperm to penetrate the womb and reach an egg
3) Thins the lining of the womb, so there is less chance of a fertilised egg implanting into the womb and being able to grow
There are many different brands of pill, made up of three main types:
Monophasic 21-day pills
This is the most common type. Each pill has the same amount of hormone in it. One pill is taken each day for 21 days and then no pills are taken for the next seven days. Microgynon, Marvelon, Yasmin and Cilest are examples of this type of pill.
Phasic 21-day pills
Phasic pills contain two or three sections of different coloured pills in a pack. Each section contains a different amount of hormones. One pill is taken each day for 21 days and then no pills are taken for the next seven days. Phasic pills need to be taken in the right order. Logynon is an example of this type of pill.
Every day (ED) pills
There are 21 active pills and seven inactive (dummy) pills in a pack. The two types of pill look different. One pill is taken each day for 28 days with no break between packets of pills. Every day pills need to be taken in the right order. Microgynon ED is an example of this type of pill.
Follow the instructions that come with your packet. If you have any questions, ask your GP, practice nurse or pharmacist.
What do I do if I miss a pill?
If you continue to be sick, keep using another form of contraception until you’ve taken the pill again for seven days without vomiting.
You should not take the pill if you:
- are very overweight
- smoke and are 35 or older
- are pregnant
- stopped smoking less than a year ago and are 35 or older
- take certain medicines (ask your GP or a health professional at a contraception clinic about this)
You should also not take the pill if you have (or have had):
- disease of the gallbladder or liver
- severe migraines, especially with aura (warning symptoms)
- anyone in your close family having a blood clot under the age of 45
- thrombosis (a blood clot) in a vein, for example in your leg or lungs
- stroke or any other disease that narrows the arteries
- a heart abnormality or heart disease, including high blood pressure
- breast cancer
- diabetes with complications of diabetes for the past 20 years
Risks with combined pill
The oestrogen in the pill may cause your blood to clot more readily. If a blood clot develops, it could cause:
- deep vein thrombosis (clot in your leg)
- pulmonary embolism (clot in your lung)
- heart attack
The risk of getting a blood clot is very small, but your doctor will check if you have certain risk factors before prescribing the pill.
The pill can be taken with caution if you have one of the risk factors below. It is unlikely you would be advised to take it if you have two or more risk factors.
- having a close relative who had a blood clot when they were younger than 45
- having high blood pressure
- being very overweight (in women with a BMI of 35 or over, the risks of using the pill usually outweigh the benefits)
- being 35 years old or over
- being a smoker or having quit smoking in the past year
- having migraines (you should not take the pill if you have severe or regular migraine attacks, especially if you get aura or a warning sign before an attack)
- having had a blood clot or stroke in the past
- being immobile for a long time – for example, in a wheelchair or with a leg in plaster
Research is ongoing into the link between breast cancer and the pill. Research suggests that users of all types of hormonal contraception have a slightly higher chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer compared with women who do not use them. However, 10 years after you stop taking the pill, your risk of breast cancer goes back to normal.
Research has also suggested a link between the pill and the risk of developing cervical cancer and a rare form of liver cancer. However, the pill does offer some protection against developing womb (endometrial) cancer, ovarian cancer and colon cancer.