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Oral Contraceptives: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects

What is the treatment?

Oral contraceptive pills are medications that prevents unwanted pregnancy. Oral contraceptives are hormonal preparations that may contain a combination of hormones oestrogen and progesterone or progesterone alone. When given in certain amounts and at certain times during the menstural cycle, these hormones prevent the ovary from releasing an egg for fertilization.

How is the treatment done?

Oral contraceptives have many effects that can prevent an unwanted pregnancy from taking place but the main action of these pills is- it stops a woman’s egg from fully developing each month. Thus the egg can no longer accept a sperm and as a result fertilization is prevented. Pills which contain a combination of oestrogen and progesterone prevent pregnancy by inhibiting the release of the hormones luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone from the pituitary gland in the brain. Luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone help in the development of egg and preparation the lining of uterus for the implantation of the embryo. Progesterone also functions as the hormone which makes the uterine mucus that surrounds the egg and make it more difficult for the sperm to penetrate the egg and therefore or fertilization to take place. In some women, progesterone also inhibits ovulation. There are different types of combination birth control pills- monophasic, biphasic, triphasic. Most birth control pills are packaged as 21-day or 28-day units. For the 21-day packages, tablets are taken daily for 21 days. This is followed by a seven day period during which no pills are taken. Then the cycle repeats. For 28-day units, medication is taken for 21 consecutive days, followed by a seven day period during which placebo tablets are taken. Women just starting to take the pills should also use additional contraception for the first seven days of use because pregnancy may occur during this period.

Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)

Any woman who does not want to get pregnant and does not have medical histories like migrane, blood clots, breast cancer can use oral contraceptive method to prevent pregnancy but it is advised to consult a doctor before taking the pills.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

Women who smoke and especially those who are over thirty five years of age and women with certain medical conditions like history of blood clots or breast or endometrial cancer, are advised against taking oral contraceptive pills as these conditions can increase the risks of the pills.

Are there any side effects?

The most common side effects of birth control pills are nausea, headache, breast tenderness, weight gain, irregular bleeding and mood alterations. Women with a history of migrane may suffer increased migrane frequency. Oral contraceptives may also aggravate insulin resistance and thus pose a risk of diabetes. Though uncommon, oral contraceptives can lead to increase in blood pressure, blood clots, heart attack and stroke.

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

There are no such post treatment guidelines.

How long does it take to recover?

A combined pill is packaged in either 21 day or 28 days everyday pack.

What is the price of the treatment in India?

Some pills usually cost more than thousand rupees. While some may cost hundred rupees. Cost depends on the type of pills used. Many health clinics sell these birth control pills for less amount.

Are the results of the treatment permanent?

The birth control pills work when taken at the right time and right amount for the prevention of pregnancy. So, the result of taking the pills will be as desired.

What are the alternatives to the treatment?

Women can use some other ways of preventing pregnancy such as the injection known as Depo Provera which is injected every three months. Women can also use vaginal ring known as Nuvaring, that is squeezed and placed in the vagina for three weeks and is taken out for a week during periods and then replaced with a new ring. Women can also use hormone UID and copper UID.

Safety: High Effectiveness: High Timeliness: Medium Relative Risk: Medium Side Effects: Medium Time For Recovery: Medium Price Range: Rs. 100- Rs. 4000

Popular Health Tips

Why it is better to take vaginal contraceptives

MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Agra
Why it is better to take vaginal contraceptives
Using contraceptives vaginally is more effective. It doesn't lead to nausea, vertigo, headache, breast tenderness, period pain and other stomach issues when compared with women taking the pills orally.
19 people found this helpful

Use Of Oral Contraceptives

MD - Consultant Physician, Doctor of Medicine, MD
General Physician, Ahmedabad
Use Of Oral Contraceptives

Many types of contraceptives, but especially oral contraceptives, can cause an increase in your blood pressure. Choose them wisely.

3 people found this helpful


Gynaecologist, Pune

With increasing globalization and lifestyle changes, even general practitioners are getting more and more young patients willing to adopt contraceptive measures. An optimum clinical choice of contraceptive can only be done through a mutual discussion between the physician and patient taking into consideration both clinical aspects and patient's choice. This article gives a brief general summary of the methods of contraception.

Contraception is the process of taking steps to ensure about not becoming pregnant after having sex. There are different types of contraceptive measures. They all have pros and cons. Different methods will be right for different couples, or right at different times in life.

Types of contraceptives:

Hormonal (2-3%)
Intrauterine (5%)
Barrier (10-15%)
Chemical (15-20%)
Sterilization (4%)
* percentages mentioned within brackets are failure rates

Hormonal contraception

It involves the use of estrogen and progesterone to prevent fertilization; associated with a 2-3% failure rate.
Oral contraceptive pills suppress the action of fsh/lh from the pituitary gland, they also suppress the lh surge, alter the cervical mucosa to inhibit penetration by spermatozoa, and they inhibit atrophic change in the endometrium.
Complications: venous thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, cva, mi, htn, amenorrhea, cholelithiasis, hepatocellular adenoma. Risks increase with smoking.

Contraindications: dvt, pe, cvd, cva, pregnancy, cancer, abnormal lfts


Monophasic (fixed combination: take estrogen and progesterone on days 1-21 and placebo on days 22-28. Increased estrogen increases the side effects of a headache, weight gain, nausea, and edema decreased estrogen and progesterone increase the risk of breakthrough bleeding and increases the failure rate.
Multiphasic: low-dose estrogen with varying doses of progesterone on days 1-21.
Progestin-only pills: not as effective and can cause breakthrough bleeding.
Levonorgestrel: lasts up to five years.
Medroxyprogesterone: lasts three months.

Decreases the risk of ovarian and endometrial cancer and decreased the risk of ectopic pregnancy.

Intrauterine contraception

It involves the insertion of a small device into the uterus with the hopes of inhibiting implantation, altering tubal motility, or inflaming the endometrium.
Intrauterine contraceptive devices are associated with a relatively low failure rate (2-4% pregnancy rate) but do suffer from a higher rate of complications (e. G, four times increased the risk of ectopic pregnancy).


Intrauterine device (iud) with progestogen: it releases progesterone and must be replaced annually.
Iud with copper-t: it contains copper and can last up to 4-6 years.
Side effects:

Increased blood loss and duration of menses, increased dysmenorrhea


Expulsion of iud, pregnancy, perforation of the uterine wall when inserted, increased risk of tubo-ovarian abscess (esp. Among younger nulliparous females with greater than ;1 sex partner). Pid is not as common with the newer iuds but still a significant risk factor.

Indicated for: multiparous women greater than 35 years who smoke.

Concerns about pelvic infections and subsequent fertility often limit the use of iucds to women who are at low risk for sexually transmitted disease and to those less likely to desire further children, i. E, monogamous multigravid patients.

Barrier methods

It involves the use of an artificial device to inserted into the vagina or fitted to the penis with the intent to retain the products of intercourse.


Condoms: condoms have a 2% failure rate in consistent couples and a 10% failure rate in occasional users. They are best indicated for std prevention.
Vaginal diaphragms: they have a 15-20% failure rate, but when combined with a spermicidal jelly and left in for 6-8 hours post-coitus failure rate declines to 2%. Diaphragms are associated with side effects of bladder irritation and cystitis, also colonization with s. Aureus if left in too long.
Cervical caps: they must be properly fitted and can be left in for a longer time than the diaphragm.
Chemical contraception

It has a 15- 20% failure rate and involves the use of sponges and spermicides.
Spermicides contain surfactants to disrupt cervical membranes; placed in the vagina up to 30 minutes before intercourse.
Physiologic contraception

It involves the avoidance of intercourse from an onset of menses to 2-days post ovulation.


This method involves manipulation of parts of male and female anatomy such that conception is prevented by failure and gametes to combine.


Vasectomy: lesser than 1% failure and can be successfully reversed in some cases.
Tubal ligation: lesser than 1% failure rate. Increase risk of ectopic.
Emergency contraception pills - emergency contraception can be used if one had sex without using contraception; or if someone had sex but there was a mistake with contraception.

Emergency contraception options are usually very effective if started within 3-5 days of unprotected sex. The earlier you take this pill, the more effective it is. It works either by preventing or postponing ovulation or by preventing the fertilized egg from settling in the womb (uterus).

A proper patient counseling informing the success rate and complication of contraception should be an integral part of the treatment regime.


Ms - Gynae & Obs, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Jaipur

Using contraceptives vaginally is more effective. It reduces nausea, vertigo, headache, breast tenderness, period pain and other stomach issues as compared to those women who take the pills orally.

1 person found this helpful

Emergency contraception

MD - Obstetrtics & Gynaecology, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Gurgaon
Emergency contraception
Taking more than 1 ipill a month can impair the delicate hormonal balance and delay your periods. Constant and rampant use of ipill can cause severe hormonal imbalances which do not respond to regular treatment.

Popular Questions & Answers

Is there any oral contraceptive way for men? If yes then name few. If no then name few female oral contraceptives.

MBBS, MD - Obstetrtics & Gynaecology
Gynaecologist, Delhi
For males there is no contraceptive pills in market. For ladies there are innumerable ovral -l. Femilon. Mama -d. Mama -n.
1 person found this helpful

Which is the safest oral contraceptive and vaginal contraceptive and how to avoid pregnancy.

MBBS, MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Gynaecologist, Warangal
There is nothing called safest coz there are failure chances for every pills . Still it can protect 95% you can consult me for dosage and type

My friend has taken contraceptive pills now she is not getting pregnant .is this because of contraceptive pills.

fellow in Obstetric Medicine , MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, FMAS, DMAS, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Hyderabad
Not really! The fertility tends to return quickly after stopping the pills. However may take about six months for some. It wad be a Good idea to visit a gynaec who cud rule out other causes of infertility.
1 person found this helpful

Doctor could you please let me know is there any side effects of using contraceptive pills. Thank you.

Anesthesiologist, Bangalore
Low dose pills available now. Its quiet safe. Stopping intermittently and restarting will further reduce the limited side effects.
2 people found this helpful

Tell me name of oral contraceptive pill which needs to be taken daily for unprotected.

Diploma in Obstetrics & Gynaecology, MBBS
General Physician, Delhi
Oral l has got minimum hormones, do take it for 3 cycles, give a break of a month, restart for next 3 cycles. Remember taking too much of hormones does have repurcussions on future fertility.

Table of Content

What is the treatment?
How is the treatment done?
Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)
Who is not eligible for the treatment?
Are there any side effects?
What are the post-treatment guidelines?
How long does it take to recover?
What is the price of the treatment in India?
Are the results of the treatment permanent?
What are the alternatives to the treatment?
Play video
Tips about Menstrual cycle, Safe periods and various methods of contraception.

I am Dr. Indu Taneja working as a senior consultant in Fortis Escort Hospital Faridabad. My special interests are high risk obstetrics and laparoscopic surgery. Today I will talk about contraception little about the normal menstrual cycle.

A normal cycle is of approximately 28 days so the ovulation means the egg formation occurs in the middle of the cycle that is approximately 14 days but this day is not fixed it can be one or two days prior or one or two days later. So let s say if it happens on 14th day four or five days before the egg formation and four or five days after the egg formation is the period which is the danger zone that means the pregnancy can happen in this period if you have intercourse during this period so this is the danger zone. So if one happens to have the relation in this period one can use emergency contraception which is you must be all aware of pill 72 or unwanted pill which is to be taken 72 hours within this period the pregnancy is to be avoided.

Next will be other contraception like the barrier method which is normally condom. This is not the foolproof method. This has the maximum failure rate approximately 35 percent. This is mainly effective in the period when the patient is breastfeeding. At this period this is the common effective method. Then there are the other methods you have heard about the pills and the Copper T. The pills are the second commonest method in which every day one has to take the pill for 21 days. The main drawback of the pill is you have to remember you have to take it on a fixed time and fixed day. You should not miss even a single dose. If one misses a dose you can have breakthrough bleeding and the failure also happens. So this is the main drawback of the pills but otherwise the safety profile is very good.

Other method is the IUCD that is the Copper T which is inserted inside the uterus. This has again the same efficacy as the pills but the advantage over the pills is you are not supposed to remember this. This once inserted can be kept and can be used for three years to five years. Government has also provided the intra uterine device which is effective for five years it is as effective as the contraceptive pills but little drawback of this is sometime this can cause irregular bleeding or the heavy bleeding during the periods which can be taken care of giving some kind of medications.

If you need any further clarification or any kind of clarification or consultation you can consult me on lybrate.
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Contraception After Giving Birth
When Can You Use Contraception After Having A Baby?
Play video
Types of Contraceptive Methods
Here are some effective contraceptive methods

Hi! I am Dr. Renu Yadav, I am a practicing obstetrics and gynaecology in sector 40 at Angels Care Clinic. Family planning is the most important things which I think everyone should know and should be aware off. The various forms of family planning are Oral Contraceptive Pills, barrier contraceptives and multiloads. People have very uncommon notion about oral contraceptives pills that they cause weight gain, acne and menstrual irregularities as well.

Different people come with different type of complaints but oral contraceptives is the best modality as you as a person you are choosing it and its in your hand how and when you are taking the medicines and the control is completely in your hand when you want to get pregnant and when you do not want to get pregnant. It must for the ladies who are working in long shifts; maximum time is spent in offices, unmarried girls who are sexually active. Its the best modality to prevent unwanted pregnancies. Along with that the other different modality is barrier contraceptives, its more about male contraception, that we call it as barrier contraceptives, you know them by the name of condoms.

For women who have already had children s, we suggest you give a gap of three to five years between the two births so the best modality comes as a Multiload. Multiload is a intra uterine copper device. Along with that there is a modified device also come in, which comes by the name of Mirena. So Multiload, if you get it inserted after your delivery, it can be inserted after six weeks after delivery and you can use it without any discomfort any pain any other complaint and It is totally safe for five years time and you would not get pregnant by anyhow. A routine checkup after the first visit when you got the Multiload inserted in you, a routine visit after your first menstrual cycle is a must. After that you can check the threat on your own and make sure that the device is working properly.

Along with that Mirena is an advanced kind of intra uterine devices, It s a device which is inserted inside the uterus and it delivers a constant amount of progesterone in your body system. Mirena can also be used with patient having fibroids and having menstrual irregularities. It s a very wonderful thing which has come in practice and it gives really good results, the patients have very satisfactory results in whatever problems they are associated with and especially with family planning.

If you want to know more about Mirena or any other family planning practices, you can contact me at with putting your questions and queries over there or you can come and personally visit me at my clinic at sector 40 and at Medi Urban clinic at Phase 4.

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Effective Tips and Types of Contraception
Here are some effective types of contraception

Hello everyone I am Dr. Meenu Goyal, a consultant obstetrician gynecologist at Goyal medical center Vasant Vihar. Today we are here to discuss about Contraception.

Choosing an optimal birth control depends on a variety of factors like your lifestyle, your age and your requirement. That is whether you want to space your pregnancy or you want to delay your pregnancy or you have completed your family and you want to just wind up with the family planning issues. Now if you are a young girl and you don't want to think about the pregnancy in the near future you can easily use the birth Control pills. They are the best measure for you.

The newer alternatives are not easily available in India. But the birth control pills cannot be used in a breastfeeding mother because it interferes with the breast milk so at that time the injection depo provera is a good solution for the nursing mothers. As it also helps in delaying pregnancy intrauterine devices with or without hormones is also a good alternative for a long duration of delaying of pregnancy. In India people normally don't want to discuss about the contraceptive measures that is why it is not being commonly used also its surrounded by lots and lots of myths but if you choose it correctly and wisely it helps you a lot.

If you want to discuss about this issue you can visit your nearest gynecologist or you can meet me at the Goyal's Medical Center, Vasant Vihar. You can also chat with me or text me or make a video call with me at Thank you.
Play video
Oral Contraceptive Or Birth Control Pills
Oral contraceptives are hormonal preparations that may contain combinations of the hormones estrogen and progestin or progestin alone. The most common side effects of the birth control pills include nausea, headache, breast tenderness, weight gain, irregular bleeding, and mood changes.
Having issues? Consult a doctor for medical advice