Levest is a combined oral contraceptive pill, taken to prevent pregnancy. It contains the active ingredients oestrogen (30mcg ethinylestradiol) and progesterone (150mcg levonorgestrel). These are female hormones that work to prevent pregnancy. It is up to 99% effective in preventing pregnancies when taken correctly.
Each strip of Levest contains 21 pills. Each pill should be taken every day for the first 21 days followed by a 7-day pill free break. It should be swallowed with water at the same time each day and after the 7-day pill free break, you will need to start a new strip of Levest to be protected from pregnancy.
Levest is a popular contraceptive pill prescribed for women in the UK and is as safe as other combined contraceptive pills to take. However, like all medications, it may not be suitable for everyone. Therefore, you will need a consultation to check that Levest is safe for you to take.
Whilst not every woman will experience side effects when taking Levest, it may still cause the certain side effects.
Common side effects of Levest include:
- Feeling sick
- Sore breast
- Change in weight
- Stomach pain
- Changes in mood
There are other more rare or uncommon side effects including allergic reactions. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience any signs of an allergic reaction when using Levest. Signs of allergic reaction include, difficulty breathing, swelling of face, mouth and skin rashes.
For more information about Levest side effects and cautions, read the patient information leaflet supplied with your pack.
Levest may also not be suitable for certain women with risk factors or those are taking other medications or suffer from other medical conditions. For example, Levest may not be suitable for you if you are over 35 years of age and smoke. Therefore, it is always important to discuss your current medical status with your GP or doctor to ensure this treatment is suitable for you to take.
What is the difference between Levest and Microgynon?
Levest 150/30 microgram coated tablets and Microgynon 30 tablets contain the same active ingredients and work in the same way, they just have different brand names. They are both commonly referred to as ‘The Pill’ and both contain levonorgestrel and ethinyl estradiol, in the same doses and work in the same way.
Can I buy Levest from my local pharmacy?
Levest is a prescription only medication, so you will need a prescriber such as your doctor to issue a prescription for you to get it from a pharmacy. It is not available over the counter so you can not buy it from your pharmacy without a prescription.
You can get Levest online from PostMyMeds and delivered to you, through our online website.
How can I buy Levest?
To buy Levest online through our service, you will need to complete a consultation to ensure the treatment is safe and suitable for you. Once completed you will be able to select a treatment and place your order for Levest online with free delivery straight to your doorstep.
How Does Levest Work?
Levest contains female hormones, levonorgestrel and ethinyl estradiol. These hormones in Levest work to prevent pregnancy by:
- Preventing ovulation – it will prevent your ovaries from releasing an egg every month
- Thinning the lining of your womb – it will thin the lining of your womb so an egg cannot easily implant in the womb even if an egg does get fertilised
- Thicken the mucus in your cervix – this will make it more difficult for sperm to get into the womb
How long does Levest take to work?
How long Levest takes to work will depend on which day in your monthly cycle you start to take Levest. If you start between day 1 to 5 of your cycle, it will work straight away and you will be protected from pregnancy. However, if you start taking Levest on any other day outside the first 5 days of your period, you will not be protected from pregnancy immediately. You will need to use an additional method of contraception (like condoms) for the first 7 days of taking the pill to prevent pregnancy.
How effective is Levest?
Levest is over 99% effective in preventing pregnancy when taken correctly. To take this medication correctly you will need to take the pill every day at the same time, except during your 7-day pill free period.
In some cases, Levest may not be as effective due to e.g. vomiting and diarrhoea, missing pills, taking other medication that may interact with Levest.
How to take Levest Pills?
Each strip of Levest contains 21 pills, which should be taken every day followed by a 7-day pill free break. Each pill is marked with the day of the week you should take it. After taking the pill for 21 days, during your pill free break you will have a ‘withdrawal bleed’ similar to your monthly period.
During your 7-day pill free break, you will still be protected from pregnancy. You will need to start a new strip after your 7-day pill free break to continue being protected from pregnancy.
Can I take Levest 150/30 tablets without a break?
If you take Levest tablets every day in your monthly cycle without a 7-day pill break, you will still be protected from pregnancy however this will delay your period, and you will not have your withdrawal bleed.
What happens if I miss a pill of Levest?
If you regularly miss one or more pills when taking Levest, it may be less effective at preventing pregnancy. You should read the patient information leaflet supplied with your pack for more information on what you should do if you have missed one or more pills as it will depend on a few factors, for example:
- If you have missed a Levest pill, take it as soon as you remember even if it means taking 2 pills on the same day. You will still be protected from pregnancy without needing emergency contraception or the morning after pill.
- If you miss a pill between day 14 and 21 of your 21-day strip, you should take the pill as soon as you remember and continue the strip as normal; in addition, you should also skip the 7-day pill free break and start the next 21-day strip of pills immediately as your current strip ends.
- If you miss more than one pill, you may not be protected from pregnancy. Therefore, you should continue to take the pill and finish your current strip, but use an additional form of contraception like condoms for the next 7 days.
- If you miss more than one pill and you have unprotected sex during this period, you will need to use emergency contraception such as the morning after pill. Therefore, you should seek medical advice from your GP or pharmacist without delay.
Can Levest tablets be used as an emergency contraception?
No, Levest tablets should not be used as a form of emergency contraception. If you have unprotected sex and are not using any contraception, you should see your GP or pharmacist for advice without delay. You can be recommended the morning after pill or the copper coil contraception. You should do this as soon as possible, as the copper coil can only be inserted within 5 days of having unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy, and there are different types of morning after pill which should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sexual intercourse and no later than either 72 hours (3 days), or 120 hours (5 days) of sex, depending on the type of pill.
What are the side effects of Levest 150/30 microgram Coated Tablets?
Levest, like all medications, can cause certain side effects although not all individuals will experience these.
Some common side effects of Levest tablets are:
- Feeling sick
- Sore breast
- Change in weight
- Stomach pain
- Changes in mood
Other uncommon and rare side effects of Levest include:
- Fluid retention
- Vaginal discharge
In rare cases, Levest may also cause an allergic reaction and you should seek immediate medical attention if you experience any signs of an allergic reaction when using Levest.
Signs of an allergic reaction include difficulty breathing, swelling of face, mouth and skin rashes.
For more information about potential side effects of Levest tablets, please read the patient information leaflet supplied with your pill pack.
What should you do if you experience side effects to Levest tablets?
Some more common side effects of Levest tablets usually improve with time, however you should speak with your doctor if you have any concerns or find them too difficult to manage.
The more common side effects of Levest may improve or go away after the first 3 months. This is as these side effects are usually caused by your body adjusting to the changes in hormones. However, if you have any serious side-effects, or you are otherwise concerned or if any of your side effects do not improve after 3 months of taking Levest pills, you should speak to your GP or doctor. They will be able to advise you on using other types of contraception that may be more suitable for you.
Where can I find more information on long term contraceptives?
You can find more information about long term contraceptives on our website. Alternatively, please speak to your GP or pharmacist for further advice.
Where can I find more information on Levest 150/30 Tablets?
You can find more information on Levest tablets in the patient information leaflet supplied with your pack.