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Gynecol Endocrinol. 2012 Oct;28(10):758-63. doi: 10.3109/09513590.2012.662546. Epub 2012 Mar 6.

Nowadays which emergency contraception? Comparison between past and present: latest news in terms of clinical efficacy, side effects and contraindications.

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Department of Gynecological Sciences and Human Reproduction, University of Padua, Italy.


Despite many highly effective methods of contraception are available nowadays, many pregnancies are unintended. Emergency contraception (EC) is the use of drug or device after unprotected intercourse to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. It is a woman's last chance to prevent unintended pregnancy. Nevertheless the confusion about mechanisms of action, side effects, clinical efficacy and controindications makes the intervention underused in every setting investigated. So far levonorgestrel (LNG) has been considered the gold standard for oral EC. Today, a new type of second generation progesterone receptor modulator, ulipristal acetate (UPA) has been proposed as a more effective drug than LNG in prevention of unwanted pregnancies by delaying or inhibiting ovulation; even if many other devices are disposable in commerce. We revised the literature to concern most of the data available on the role of EC and moreover clarifying the available methods, the action windows of the accessible devices, the adverse events and the controindications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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