“Week-after pill” sparks debate - Macleans.ca

“Week-after pill” sparks debate

New medication effective up to five days after sex


EllaOne, a new “morning after” pill available in Europe that is effective up to five days after a woman has had sex, has triggered controversy in England over concern the extra safety net it provides will result in a greater incidence of STDs and give women “a false sense of security,” the Telegraph reports. The debate comes on the heels of a report published Friday in the British medical journal, The Lancet, that claims ellaOne is more effective than Levonorgestrel, or Plan B, the emergency contraceptive pill available in 140 countries, including Canada. The study found that women who took ellaOne within five days after sex almost halved their chances of becoming pregnant compared to women who took Plan B, which is effective only if women take it within three days of having sex. Currently, the drug is licensed for sale only with a prescription, but ellaOne will become available over-the-counter in the next two to three years.

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“Week-after pill” sparks debate

  1. 50% is still not very good effectiveness.

  2. As well, it doesn't prevent fertilization, so if you are squeamish about abortion you shouldn't take this pill either. Of course, you shouldn't take the standard birth control pill for the same reason.

    • Standard birth control pill prevents ovulation. There is no fertilization that occurs in that case. I'm hoping you just didn't know any better and weren't deliberately spreading false informtion.

      • It both prevents ovulation and implantation. (cut and paste time!)

        The hormones in birth control pills combine to prevent the body from releasing an egg. Should an egg be released, the progesterone makes it difficult for the egg to travel down the fallopian tube, and also alters the uterine lining to prevent implantation in the unlikely event of fertilization. (end cut and paste)

        So I'm hoping you just didn't know any better and weren't deliberately spreading false information.

      • Judging by my -1 and your +2, you're not the only one who is mistaken about how birth control pills work.

        • Preventing ovulation necessarily prevents fertilization.
          Since you agree that it prevents ovulation, suggesting that you shouldn't take the standard birth control pill because it doesn't prevent fertilization is false.

          If you wanted to argue that the standard birth control pill isn't perfect, well.. that's a different argument — and not the one you made.

          • I never said that the birth control pill didn't have the design objection of preventing ovulation, merely that it carries a similar ethical problem to the morning after pills. I merely said that if you are squeamish about preventing or aborting the gestation of your offspring after conception, the birth control pill isn't the way to go for contraception.

            I wasn't talking about the efficacy of birth control pills at all. I was just pointing out that they have the same ethical shortfall as morning after pills, because they sometimes function as morning after pills when ovulation isn't prevented.

  3. Oh, come on people. How is what I said the least bit controversial?

    Are people saying that even if you don't approve of abortion you should take morning after pills and birth control pills rather than using other means of preventing pregnancy?

  4. Cross your legs and you dont have to worry about this issue.