Ovranette is a brand of the combined oral contraceptive pill. It is taken to prevent an unwanted pregnancy, and is an effective method of contraception when taken as prescribed.
- Ovranette is a combined oral contraceptive pill
- Ovranette contains synthetic versions of the natural hormones produced by a woman’s body, oestrogen and progesterone
- Ovranette is the trade name, and the active ingredients are levonorgestrel and ethinylestradiol
- It is taken if you want to avoid getting pregnant whilst sexually active
- The combined pill is not suitable for all women, as it can increase the risk of blood clots and some cancers
- As with all contraceptive pills, Ovranette does not protect against sexually transmitted infections
- It is important to read the patient leaflet for a full list of side effects and cautions.
How Does Ovranette Work?
Ovranette contains two hormones that would naturally be produced by a woman’s body. When taken in the dose contained within the pill, they prevent you from getting pregnant.
Ovranette works in three ways to prevent a pregnancy from occurring.
- It prevents an egg from being released from the ovaries
- It makes the mucus around the cervix thicker to stop sperm from entering the uterus
- It prevents the lining of the uterus from thickening, so that a fertilised egg would be unable to implant and begin developing.
The combined pill is one of the most effective reversible forms of contraception. In this context, the word reversible means that if you stop taking it, you could get pregnant. It is therefore not a permanent choice and should not prevent you from getting pregnant in future if you wanted to.
Ovranette is also prescribed to treat endometriosis, painful periods, premenstrual tension (PMT), and heavy periods.
How is Ovranette Taken?
One Ovranette pill should be taken every day for 21 days in a row. After this, you will have a 7 day break where you do not take Ovranette. During this time, you are likely to have a withdrawal bleed. This is a bleed that is like a period.
At the end of the 7 day break, you start a new strip of 21 tablets and continue this cycle to maintain your contraceptive cover.
If you are not currently taking an oral contraceptive pill, you should begin taking Ovranette on the first day of your period.
If you are changing from another combined oral contraceptive, take your first tablet of Ovranette on the first day immediately after the end of the previous oral contraceptive course.
If you are changing from a progesterone-only pill (POP or mini-pill), you should take the first tablet of Ovranette on the first day of bleeding, even if you have already taken a POP that day.
Starting Ovranette in this way offers immediate contraceptive cover.
You should take Ovranette at the same time every day. If you forget to take a pill, take it as soon as you remember. If the delay is less than 12 hours, contraceptive protection is maintained. If you miss your pill by more than 12 hours, additional contraception will be required, such as condoms.
Dosage of Ovranette
Each Ovranette pill contains 150 micrograms of levonorgestrel (synthetic progesterone) and 30 micrograms of ethinylestradiol (synthetic oestrogen).
Are there any Side Effects?
Like all medications, Ovranette can have some side effects. The most common side effects include:
- Mood changes including depressed mood or anxiety
- Loss of libido
- Nausea or vomiting (feeling sick or being sick)
- Abdominal pain
- Spots or acne
- Breakthrough bleeding or spotting
- Breast pain or tenderness
- Breast enlargement
- Vaginal infections including thrush (candida infection)
- Increase or decrease in appetite leading to a change in weight.
If these side effects persist or become troublesome you should speak to your doctor for further advice.
Occasionally, Ovranette can cause more serious health concerns. Taking a combined oral contraceptive pill can increase your risk of:
- Blood clots to the legs – seek medical advice immediately if you experience a painful, red, or swollen leg
- Blood clots to the lungs – seek help immediately if you experience breathlessness, chest pain or cough up any blood
- Breast cancer
- Cervical cancer
- Chloasma (yellow or brown patches on the skin)
- Liver disease.
Ovranette may not be suitable if you, or a close family member, have been diagnosed with one of these conditions.
Serious allergic reactions happen very rarely. If you have a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) including breathlessness, lip swelling or tongue swelling, call 999 immediately.
Ovranette may not be suitable for everyone. You should tell your prescriber if you:
- Are at high risk of blood clots to the legs or lungs
- Have ever had a deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism (DVT or PE, clots to the legs or lungs)
- Have a blood clotting disorder
- Are awaiting major surgery that will cause prolonged immobilisation
- Have ever had a heart attack or stroke, or have angina
- Have migraines
- Have diabetes
- Have severe hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Have, or have had, breast cancer or cervical cancer
- Have otosclerosis
- Have gallstones
- Have liver or kidney disease
- Have systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or lupus)
- Have sickle cell anaemia
- Have hereditary angioedema
- Have any allergies
- Might be pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
Your prescriber can then advise whether Ovranette is a suitable medication for you.
Ovranette may not be suitable if a close family member has been diagnosed with a previous PE (lung clot) or DVT (leg clot), breast cancer or cervical cancer.
Some medications can interact with Ovranette. You may be advised that Ovranette will not suit you if you already take:
- Anti-retroviral medications including ritonavir and nevirapine
- Medications for seizures
- Some anti-microbials including rifampicin and rifabutin
- Steroids or anti-inflammatory medications
- St John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum).
Because Ovranette may not suit everyone, we will complete a Consultation with you including a health questionnaire. This will ensure that the medication will be suitable for you.
A qualified prescriber will review your current medications, including any herbal remedies or supplements, to ensure that Ovranette will not interact with them.