Ask The Doctor > Questions & Answers > Emergency contraception bleeding

Emergency contraception bleeding

Patient: My period ended a week ago took take action (EC) and got my period again is this normal? Could I be pregnant?12-17th period took place21st took emergency contraception29th-31st heavy bleeding started again

 

 

Symptoms: sore breasts
bleeding
cramping

 

 

Doctor: The common side effects of a morning-after pill are abdominal (tummy) pain, headache, irregular menstrual bleeding (spot ting or heavy bleeding) before your next period is due, nausea (feeling sick) and tiredness. What you are experiencing is most probably just a side effect of the pill.After taking the emergency contraceptive pill, most women will have a normal period at the expected time. However sometimes, you may even have your period later or earlier than normal.These side effects of the pill are due to the progesterone like hormones they contain. The progesterone hormone is typically secreted by the ovaries after ovulation and periods are the result of a decrease in the blood concentrations of progesterone hormone. By taking a morning after pill, the progesterone levels in the blood rise and then fall leading to a withdrawal bleed.There is no need to worry about these side effects. The bleeding you are having will last as long as your regular period and then stop on its own.After having a period, it is highly unlikely that you could be pregnant. The sore breasts, cramping etc. that you are experiencing could just be stress related.However the best way to relieve you of the stress is to do a home pregnancy test whenever you are in doubt. You can follow the instructions on the pack and get tested yourself without any hassles. Just take the test around 2 weeks after any unprotected intercourse to reliably get yourself tested.If you are not planning to have a baby soon it is best you use a regular contraceptive method to stay protected. I strongly urge you to visit a family planning clinic or a contraception counselor and discuss the different contraceptive options that you may choose from such as long acting reversible contraceptives (LARC). Armed with the proper knowledge, I am sure you will be able to avoid such anxious moments in the future.

 


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Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

Dr. Suneel Sharman completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Toronto. He currently operates Infinity Health Centre, a walk-in-clinic in downtown Toronto.

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