Are emergency contraceptive pills 100% safe?

Here are questions from readers that were addressed by leading obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Mini Salunkhe. The identities of the solution-seekers have been withheld to protect their privacy.

Q1.    Madam, I have already suffered two miscarriages over the past 10 months and I am fed up with all this. What according to you is the safest method of contraception. I just don’t want to go through this again!

In view of you having suffered two miscarriages I would suggest a detailed evaluation from a gynaecologist. This would help getting to the root of the problem.

In the meantime (after careful evaluation of your history), the most effective method would of contraception would be OC (oral contraceptive) pills.

Q2. I was told that these emergency contraceptive pills available are 100% safe no matter how often use them . To be honest, I have used it a few times myself. I did have a lot of bleeding each time but I checked online and that was considered normal. I just wanted to confirm if this is indeed safe. Which is the pill you would recommend that has no side effects?

Emergency contraceptives as the name suggests are to be taken ONLY in an emergency i.e. once in few weeks, if absolutely necessary.

No, they are not 100% safe. Side effects like irregular bleeding and hormonal imbalance is seen often. Also, they are not a foolproof method of contraception and there is a chance of unwanted pregnancy.

Regular methods like OC pills or Intra-uterine devices are suggested basis the obstetric history.

Q3. I have been suffering from PCOD for over 4 years and have had no relief with all the hormone tablets etc that my gynaecologist has been giving me. I have also been on Metformin but my cycles are non-existent. I was told homeopathy is effective. Is this true? Doctor, please guide me as to what I should do to handle this.

I understand that you are unhappy as the hormones are not working and you have very scanty menses but there is always a solution !

Try regular healthy diet, exercise, adjuvant therapy and weight reduction. Additionally, a little change in the hormones administered to you may hep.

Ovulation stimulation can be given in case you wish you conceive.

Q4. Dear Dr, I have been married for 5 years and both of us have busy corporate lives and have been delaying our plans of starting a family. I am 29 now and my husband is 31. Is it ok to postpone having a baby by a few years ? I keep reading all kinds of things online and get worried.  Please advise.

As you may be aware, with age, the ovarian activity declines.

However, if your periods are regular, your weight normal for your height (normal BMI) and you don’t suffer from PCOD you could wait for a year. Routine tests like Thyroid Function should also be normal.

I would also suggest that your husband also undergo a routine check up with semen analysis.

Thank you, readers for your queries. I hope I have been able to answer them and clarify your doubts. I would be more than happy to take time off to answer all your questions week after week. You can reach me via editorial@pune365.com

Mini_Salunke_JPGDr Mini Salunkhe is a senior gynaecologist practising in Pune for over a decade. Apart from being a private practitioner, she is a consulting obstetrician and gynaecologist at Inamdar Hospital

Dr Mini Salunkhe

Dr Mini Salunkhe

Dr Mini Salunkhe is a senior gynaecologist practising in Pune for over a decade. Apart from being a private practitioner, she is a consulting obstetrician and gynaecologist at Inamdar Hospital. Dr Salunkhe addresses reader queries every Friday on Pune365.
Dr Mini Salunkhe

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