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You are here : 3-RX.com > Drugs & Medications > Quick Drug Information (DrugNotes) > Levonorgestrel (Oral)

Levonorgestrel (By Mouth)

Levonorgestrel (LEE-voe-nor-jes-trel)

Prevents pregnancy after unprotected sex or after failure of another birth control method.

Brand Name(s):

Plan B
There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not use levonorgestrel if you have had an allergic reaction to it, or to other progestin drugs, such as progestogen oral contraceptives (Ovrette®, Micronor®, Nor-QD®), progesterone, megestrol, or medroxyprogesterone. You should not use levonorgestrel if you are already pregnant, or have unusual vaginal bleeding.

How to Use This Medicine:


  • Take the first tablet as soon as possible after unprotected sex, unless directed otherwise by your doctor. Take the second tablet 12 hours after the first tablet.
  • You may take the pills with food or milk to avoid stomach upset.
  • If you vomit within one hour of taking either dose of this medicine, call your doctor to ask if you should repeat that dose.

If a dose is missed:

  • Call your doctor for instructions.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store at room temperature, away from heat and moisture.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using phenytoin (Dilantin®), carbamazepine (Tegretol®), or rifampin. These medicines may make levonorgestrel less effective.
Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you have ever had a tubal pregnancy, or if you are breastfeeding or have diabetes.
  • Levonorgestrel is used to prevent pregnancy within 72 hours after unprotected sex. If you are already pregnant, this medicine will not end your pregnancy.
  • This medicine is an emergency method of preventing pregnancy, and should not be your regular method of birth control.
  • Levonorgestrel will not protect you or your partner from diseases such as syphilis, herpes, or HIV (the virus that causes AIDS).
  • After using this medicine, you should have your next period at the expected time. If your next period is more than one week late, check with your doctor. You may be pregnant.
  • You may have spotting a few days after using this medicine. With your next period, you may bleed a little more or a little less than usual.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Severe stomach pain

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Breast tenderness
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor.

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