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Eloine

Women use Eloine as a contraceptive to avoid pregnancy and to treat either premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PDD) symptoms or acne when they take oral contraceptives for contraceptive purposes.

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What is Eloine?

Eloine (the UK brand of the medicine known as Yaz) may be taken by women for three different reasons: as an oral contraceptive pill to prevent pregnancy, as a treatment for the symptoms of PDD and as a treatment for moderately severe acne.

Eloine contains two female hormones ethinyl estradiol (a natural oestrogen) and drospirenone (a synthetic progesterone), and is therefore a combination contraceptive. The hormones behave as they would do during a woman's natural monthly menstrual cycle. Together they act on the female reproductive system to prevent ovulation (egg release from the ovaries), and cause cervical mucus to thicken and the uterine lining to thin. These actions make it extremely difficult for sperm to travel to and reach an egg.

How to use Eloine

Each monthly blister pack comprises 24 pink hormone-containing tablets and 4 white placebo tablets. When first using Eloine, take a pink pill daily, starting on the first day of your period. Continue taking a pink pill daily from Day 1 to 24 and then take a white pill daily from Day 25 to 28. A bleed, known as a withdrawal bleed, usually (but not always) occurs once you start taking the white pills. Tablets must be taken in pack order and at the same time (preferably in the evening/at night) each day. If you start after the first day of your period, you cannot guarantee contraceptive protection until after you have taken a pink pill for 7 days consecutively. Therefore, you should also use another non-hormonal method of contraception and consider if you could be pregnant. Importantly, remember that the more pink pills missed, the greater the risk of pregnancy (so read the patient leaflet carefully).

The second and future blister packs should begin on the day after you took the fourth white pill, which should always be on the same week-day you started to take the first pack. Do this despite the presence or absence of your period. Take the same contraceptive precautions if you are late starting the next 28 tablets. You can stop this medicine at any time but you will be at risk of conceiving. If this is what you want and you wish to calculate the baby's birth date, then wait for your periods to begin naturally before trying for a baby.

Also when first using Eloine you have to consider the following:

  • If changing to Eloine from another oral contraceptive, start Eloine on the scheduled start day of the new packet of previous tablets.
  • If changing to Eloine from a transdermal patch/vaginal ring/injection method of contraception, start Eloine on the scheduled start day of the next patch/ring application or injection dose
  • If changing to Eloine from an intrauterine system/implant method of contraception, start Eloine on the removal day.

There is a risk of pregnancy if you do not follow the leaflet instructions on how to use Eloine or if you have vomiting or diarrhoea. Use extra contraceptive precautions and regard vomiting as a missed pill (if within 4 hours of taking a pill) in these circumstances.

Do not take Eloine if you are pregnant; before 4 weeks after giving birth if you are not breastfeeding; until after weaning the child if breastfeeding; or following an abortion after 6 months of gestation. Additional contraceptive protection as detailed above applies.

Who can use Eloine?

Eloine is for women 18 years of age and older or of reproductive age, and can be taken by adolescents under aged 18 after puberty. It is not for use in females before they start or after they stop menstruating.

Eloine should not be taken by women who are pregnant. You will not be prescribed Eloine if you are allergic to any constituents of the tablet or have impaired kidney or adrenal gland function, unusual uterine bleeding (cause unknown), breast/other oestrogen/progesterone-sensitive cancers, liver cancer/disease. This medicine should also not be taken if you are at increased risk of thromboembolism, including women who smoke (aged 35+ years), or have blood vessel clots, blood vessel disease (particularly vessel of the heart and brain), heart disease, blood clotting problems, uncontrolled high blood pressure, diabetes, migraine, or headaches with specific symptoms; or are at risk of raised blood potassium levels.

Before starting Eloine, any other medicines that you currently take should be revealed to your doctor because some medicines decrease/increase the contraceptive effect of the hormones in Eloine. These medications include those with

  • A decreasing effect: specific enzyme inducers, hormonal contraceptives, epilepsy treatments, antibiotics, HIV/ hepatitis C protease inhibitors, and St. John's wort
  • An increasing effect: specific enzyme inhibitors, other oral combined contraceptives, atorvastatin, antifungal preparations, HIV/ hepatitis C protease inhibitors, vitamin C, and paracetamol.

Eloine side effects

All women should be aware that oral combined contraceptives carry a risk of thrombosis. The synthetic progesterone in Eloine (drospirenone) could be associated with a greater risk of venous thromboembolism than other synthetic progesterones. You are advised to see your doctor immediately if you develop any side effects that may indicate a thrombotic event or another event that would preclude the use of this medicine. Breakthrough bleeding and spotting sometimes occurs but you should continue to take Eloine as this usually disappears; you only need tell your doctor if the bleeding persists.

Most commonly occurring side effects include headache, migraine, irregular bleeding patterns, nausea, vomiting, painful or tender breasts, fluctuations in mood and emotions, tiredness, and reduced sex drive. Less frequently, serious cardiovascular events (e.g., heart attack), stroke, vascular events in veins and arteries (e.g., deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism), hypertension, liver disease (e.g., jaundice and abnormal liver function), gallbladder disease, inflammatory bowel disease, elevated blood potassium or triglyceride levels, diabetes, skin disorders, irregular bleeding from the uterus, systemic lupus erythematosus, and hypersensitivity. Most patients get no side effects whatsoever.

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