Pharmacies fail to warn that emergency contraceptive pill is ‘increasingly ineffective’ for most women

Stuff 2 July 2017
Family First Comment: So does this mean that Family Planning having been giving yet more incomplete and harmful advice?!
Interesting quote in the article though..
“I love, and adore, and idolise my daughter, and in hindsight, I am so glad the pill did not work, but I took the ECP to prevent a pregnancy.”

Clinics and pharmacists are prescribing the morning-after pill to women, too embarrassed to warn them it is unlikely to work for any woman of above-average weight.

In May last year, Terrie Caldow, 33, had no idea her weight would mean the emergency contraceptive pill (ECP) would not prevent an unwanted pregnancy when she went to a sexual health clinic in Tauranga.

Weighing more than 70kg at the time, Caldow says she was not told her weight was a risk factor. The pill didn’t work – she now has a five-month-old daughter.

Despite a warning issued by Medsafe in 2014, pharmacies are failing to warn women their weight could render the ECP ineffective.

Pharmacies visited by women journalists, asking for the ECP, failed to follow the dispensing guidelines, which instruct them to refer women of above-average body-mass index to a doctor. And that experience was echoed by other women.

The Medsafe warning was issued after research revealed the most popular type of morning after pill made from Levonorgestrel was ineffective in preventing pregnancies in women weighing more than 80 kilograms, and became increasingly ineffective in women over 70kg.


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