Gedarel

Use Gedarel to enjoy sex and avoid unplanned pregnancy

Order new supplies of Gedarel 20/150 or Gedarel 30/150 online with us, if you are currently using this reliable and well-tolerated contraceptive pill.

Our prices

Strength Quantity Price Stock
20mcg/150mcg63 tablets£11.95In Stock
30mcg/150mcg63 tablets£11.95In Stock
Prices exclude a prescription fee. This treatment requires a quick online consultation,
which a doctor will review to determine if a prescription is appropriate.

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Information

Dr Samantha Miller

Reviewed by Dr Samantha Miller MB ChB
(2017, University of Glasgow)
GMC number: 7561464

Information last reviewed 27/02/2021

About

What is Gedarel?

Gedarel is a type of contraceptive known as the combined pill. One of the most popular methods of preventing pregnancy, it contains synthetic versions of the female sex hormones progesterone and oestrogen to stop fertilisation from occurring.

How does Gedarel work?

Gedarel works by preventing ovulation so that the ovaries do not release an egg into the womb in preparation for fertilisation. It does this by releasing the hormones desogestrel (a synthetic progestogen) and ethinylestradiol (a synthetic oestrogen). Aside from this, Gedarel also thickens the mucus surrounding the entrance to the womb to reduce the chance of sperm being able to enter through the vagina, and it thins the lining of the womb to prevent an egg from being able to attach itself to the wall.

How effective is Gedarel?

When used correctly, Gedarel is 99% effective. Forgetting to take it, being prescribed antibiotics and suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea can all impact the effectiveness of the pill. Its effectiveness is closer to 91% if not used entirely correctly.

Gedarel for non-contraceptive purposes

The pill has some benefits outside of preventing unwanted pregnancies. It can help improve acne, reduce PMS and period pain, and create a lighter and more regular menstrual cycle.

Ingredients

Active ingredients

The inactive ingredients contained in Gedarel are potato starch; stearic acid; all-rac-alpha-tocopherol; lactose monohydrate; magnesium stearate; silica colloidal anhydrous; povidone K 30, hypromellose, Macrogol 5000, propylene glycol.

Inactive ingredients

The inactive ingredients contained in Gedarel are: potato starch; stearic acid; all-rac-alpha-tocopherol; lactose monohydrate; magnesium stearate; silica colloidal anhydrous; povidone K 30.

Dosage

How to start Gedarel

If you are new to using hormonal contraception, you should ideally start taking Gedarel on the first day of your period, and you'll immediately be protected from unwanted pregnancy. You can start taking it at another time in your cycle but you'll need to use condoms, or another form of contraception, for the first seven days. 

If you’re switching from another form of combined hormonal contraceptive (e.g. another combined pill, the patch or the ring), finish your current pack, patch or ring regime and start taking Gedarel right away. If you were due to take a 7-day break, omit this. You’ll be protected from pregnancy right away  If you’re switching from a progestogen-only pill, you can start Gederel at any point, but you will not be fully protected from pregnancy until you have taken Gedarel for seven consecutive days, so be sure to use condoms for that week.

When does Gedarel start to work?

If you start taking Gedarel on day 1 of your period it will start to work right away. If you begin a pack on any other day in your cycle then you will need to use additional contraceptive methods such as condoms or a diaphragm for the first seven days.

How to take Gedarel

Choose a time of the day that's convenient for you to take the pill. You should take it daily at the same time each day until you reach the end of the pack. Wait seven days until you begin the next pack, during this time you will have a bleed like a period.

What should I do if I took a pill too late?

If it's been less than 12 hours since you were due to take your pill then you do not need to worry. Take your pill as soon as you remember and continue with the rest of your pack. If it has been more than 12 hours then follow the steps below for what to do if you've missed a pill. 

What should I do if I missed a pill?

If it has been more than twelve hours since you were due to take your pill then your protection may be affected. Take your missed pill as soon as you remember and continue with the rest of your pack at the usual daily time, even if this does mean you need to take more than one pill in the same day. You should also use additional contraception for the next seven days to ensure you are protected against pregnancy.

If you have missed more than one pill, and have had sexual intercourse without barrier contraception around the time of the missed pill, you may require emergency contraception – contact your pharmacy, GP or sexual health clinic for advice.

Side Effects

Gedarel side effects

There are a number of side effects associated with taking the combined pill. The main one to be aware of is that It increases your risk of experiencing a blood clot so you should always take the time to learn what the signs are in case this should occur. 

  • Common side effects (affecting up to 1 in 10 people) include: 
  • Breakthrough bleeding and spotting - this is particularly in the first few cycles of taking Gedarel
  • Nausea 
  • Headaches 
  • Altered mood, depression or nervousness
  • Acne
  • Dizziness 
  • Abdominal pain or cramps
  • Painful menstruation (dysmenorrhoea)
  • Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
  • Weight gain 
  • Breast pain or tenderness 
  • No periods or bleeding (Amenorrhoea)

Less common side effects (affecting up to 1 in 100 people) include: 

  • Fluid retention 
  • Lack of sex drive 
  • Vomiting 
  • Diarrhoea 
  • High blood pressure 
  • Rash 
  • Migraines 
  • Impaired hearing due to a condition called otosclerosis
  • Breast Enlargement 

Rare side effects (affecting up to 1 in 10,000 people) include: 

  • Hypersensitivity or allergic reaction
  • Increased sex drive
  • Erythema nodosum (a skin condition characterised by raised red or pink nodules under the skin of the shins)
  • Erythema multiforme (a skin condition that usually presents with raised spots or blisters)
  • Chloasma (a discolouration of the skin)
  • Eye irritation when using contact lenses 
  • Change in vaginal discharge 
  • Breast discharge
  • Weight loss 
  • Blood clots: 
  • In the leg or foot (deep  vein thrombosis, DVT)
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke 
  • A mini-stroke

Contraindications

Gedarel is not suitable for women who: 

  • Have ever had a blood clot in the legs or lungs
  • Have a medical condition that affects blood clotting
  • Are off their feet for long periods of time or who need an operation and will be immobile for a period of time
  • Have ever had a heart attack or stroke
  • Have ever had angina pectoris 
  • Have severe diabetes which has damaged blood vessels
  • Have very high blood pressure 
  • Have ever experienced a migraine with aura 
  • Have ever experienced liver problems including tumour
  • Have, or may have, breast cancer or cancer in the genitals 
  • Have unexplained vaginal bleeding 
  • May be pregnant 
  • Have endometrial hyperplasia
  • Are allergic to any of the ingredients in Gedarel 
  • Have high cholesterol 
  • Have hyperhomocysteinaemia
  • Have ever had pancreatitis 
  • Have any other condition that may increase your risk of a blood clot
  • Are over 50
  • Smoke and are over 35

Drug interactions

Certain drugs can interact with Gedarel, reducing its effectiveness. These are: 

  • Antibiotics 
  • Medications to treat epilepsy
  • HIV treatments 
  • Hepatitis treatments 
  • Tuberculosis treatments 

Always inform your doctor that you are taking Gedarel before being prescribed additional medicines and let your doctor know about any current medication you are taking before starting the pill. 

Gedarel and alcohol

Alcohol does not have an effect on Gedarel, however, if alcohol caused you to vomit, shortly after taking the pill, it may not be as effective and you may need to use additional precautions for a few days.

Treatment Options

Gedarel 20 vs Gedarel 30

Gedarel 30 contains a standard dose of oestrogen hormones whereas Gedarel 20 has a lower 20 microgram dose. This may be preferable for women who are sensitive to oestrogen and are prone to experiencing side effects e.g. headaches or nausea.

Gedarel vs the mini pill

The mini pill differs from Gedarel as it only contains progestogen hormones. It's suitable for women who are unable to take the combined pill and produces fewer side effects. There is less flexibility with the mini pill, however. It must be taken within a more specific time frame, and you cannot use it to control your period.

Alternatives to Gedarel

There are many different types of the combined pill available. Marvelon is similar to Gedarel and other popular brands of combined pull include Microgynon 30, Rigevidon and Cilest. Cerazette and Cerelle are two examples of the progestogen-only, or mini pill. There are other long-acting reversible contraceptives available which include the IUD (copper coil), IUS (Mirena coil), the contraceptive implant and the injection (Depo). Condoms are the only method of contraception that protect against sexually transmitted infections.

Switching contraceptive pill

If you are switching to Gedarel from a different type of combined contraceptive pill then you should begin Gedarel once you finish your current pack, skipping the seven-day break. If you are taking the progestogen-only pill then take your first Gedarel pill on the day your period begins. If you don’t have periods on the progestogen-only pill, you can start Gedarel at any time. When swapping from a progestogen-only pill, you’ll need to use condoms for a week to avoid unwanted pregnancy. Not every type of contraceptive pill will suit all women so you may find that you need to try a few different varieties before finding the right one.

Are Gedarel and Marvelon the same?

Gedarel and Marvelon are the same. They both contain 30 micrograms of ethinylestradiol and 150 micrograms of desogestrel. 

Q&A

Can you use Gedarel for period delay?

Gedarel can be used for period delay by running two packs together rather than having the usual seven-day break in between pill packs. This will delay your period for an additional 21 days.

If I have vomited, will Gedarel still work?

If you vomit within 3–4 hours of taking Gedarel then it may not have been absorbed by the body. In this case, take another pill right away and continue with the rest of your pack as normal. This means your cycle will be one day shorter than usual. If you continue to be sick then try to keep taking your daily pill but also use additional contraception until you feel better, and for seven days after to ensure you are protected from pregnancy. If you’re at the end of a pack when you are unwell, continue right onto the next pack without taking a 7-day break.

When can I get pregnant after taking Gedarel?

It is possible to get pregnant as soon as you stop taking Gedarel. It can take a few months for your cycle to return to normal and some women may try for six months before they get pregnant. It's different for everyone so have patience and focus on staying healthy during this time. 

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