Need to renew your contraceptive pill? With Zava, you can save time and hassle by doing it online. You can select a preferred treatment, such as Qlaira.
To begin your order, start by completing a short online assessment and selecting a preferred treatment. Our doctors will review and approve as appropriate. Your prescription will be sent to your chosen address.
How to take Qlaira
Always follow the directions given to you by your healthcare professional. Each pack contains 28 pills. There are five different types of pill in each pack, which are different colours. Four of the types of coloured pills contain hormones at different strengths, and the white pills don’t contain any hormones.
Qlaira pills are numbered to make it easy to see that you have taken the right pill, and there are also helpful stick on strips in each pack to tell you on which day of the week you should take which pill. The last two white tablets in each pack are inactive.
It doesn’t matter what time of day you take Qlaira but it’s best to take it at around the same time every day. You can take them with or without food.
Qlaira active ingredients
The active ingredients in Qlaira tablets are estradiol and dienogest at varying strengths.
- two dark yellow tablets contain 3 mg estradiol
- five medium red tablets contain 2 mg estradiol and 2mg dienogest
- 17 light yellow tablets contain 2 mg estradiol and 3 mg dienogest
- two dark red tablets contain 1 mg estradiol
- two white tablets contain no active ingredients
Common side effects (affecting between 1 and 10 in every 100 users)
- abdominal pain, nausea
- loss of periods, sore breasts, painful periods, irregular bleeding (and heavy irregular bleeding)
- weight gain
You may experience irregular periods, spotting, and breakthrough bleeding when you first start taking Qlaira. If you don't have a withdrawal bleed for two months in a row, take a pregnancy test before you start the next pack.
Qlaira can be taken by sexually active women as a contraceptive to prevent pregnancy. Women who have heavy periods can also take it control their symptoms.
Combined contraceptive pills, like Qlaira, shouldn’t be used by women who have certain health conditions, or who have higher risks of complications like blood clots. Your doctor will take into account possible risk factors like your medical history, family history, weight, age, and smoking status to assess if this type of pill would be safe for you to use.
Don’t take Qlaira if you’re pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking it, you should stop straight away. Qlaira and other combined contraceptive pills shouldn’t be used for 6 weeks after you’ve had a baby, if you’re breastfeeding.
Don't take Qlaira if:
- you have (or have ever had) a blood clot (thrombosis) in a blood vessel of your legs, your lungs or any other organs;
- you have a disorder that affects your blood clotting
- you’re having an operation, or expect to be off your feet for a long time
- you have ever had a heart attack or a stroke;
- you have (or have ever had) angina pectoris or transient ischaemic attack
- you have (or have ever had) a type of migraine called ‘migraine with aura’;
- you have (or have ever had) liver disease - and your liver function still isn’t normal
- you have (or have ever had) a tumour of the liver
- you have (or have ever had) cancer or suspected cancer of the breast or genital organs
- you have any unexplained vaginal bleeding
- you're allergic to estradiol valerate, dienogest, or any of the other ingredients in Qlaira.
You also shoudn't take Qlaira if you have any of the following diseases that may increase your risk of a clot in the arteries:
If you're less than 12 hours late taking a Qlaira pill, take it as soon as you remember and continue to take it at your usual time every day. You will still be protected against pregnancy. If you miss more than one pill, you may not be protected against pregnancy and you should ask your doctor for advice.
If you're more than 12 hours late taking a pill, you may not be protected against pregnancy. Take the missed pill as soon as you remember (even if you have to take two pills in one day) and check the missed pill chart in your pill pack to see what you should do next.
If you forget to start a new pack of pills, or forget a pill on days 1 to 9, use an extra type of contraception such as condoms for the next nine days and carry on taking the pills as normal. If you have had unprotected sex in the seven days before you missed a pill you could be pregnant, and you need to speak to your doctor.
If you miss a pill on days 10 to 17 of the packet, you’ll need to use another form of contraception, like condoms, for the next nine days, and carry on with the rest of the pack as normal.
If you miss a pill from days 18 to 24 of the packet, start a new packet straight away with the first pill, and discard the old pack. You’ll also need to use another form of contraception such as condoms for the next nine days.
If you miss a pill on day 25 to 26, take the missed pill immediately and the next pill at your normal time. You don’t need to use any extra contraception.
If you forget to take one of the white inactive pills you'll still be protected. Just discard the missed pill and carry on with the rest of the pack and the next pack as normal.
If you miss more than one pill or are late starting your next packet, you may be at risk of pregnancy. You may need to consider using emergency contraception (the morning after pill) if you have had unprotected sex. You should speak to your doctor if you’re concerned about this.
If you’re sick within three or four hours of taking a pill, take another pill as soon as you feel well enough, within 12 hours of the normal time you would have taken it. Take the next one at your normal time. If you carry on being sick, or you were more than 12 hours late taking the next pill, ask your doctor for advice.
If you have very severe diarrhoea which lasts for over 24 hours, keep taking your pill at your normal time, but follow the instructions for missing a pill.
For further information and detail, read the patient information leaflet that comes with the medicine.
If you find that you miss pills often, you should speak to your doctor about other possible types of contraception. There are long acting types of contraception such as the implant, injection, or coil, which some women like as they don’t need to remember to take a pill every day.
You should always tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including over the counter and herbal medicines, before you start taking Qlaira. Also make sure that any new medicines are safe to use while using Qlaira.
Tablet core: lactose monohydrate, maize starch, pregelatinised maize starch, povidone K25 (E1201), magnesium stearate (E572)
Tablet film-coating: hypromellose type 2910 (E464), macrogol 6000, talc (E553b), titanium dioxide (E171), iron oxide yellow (E172) and/or iron oxide red (E172)
Tablet core: lactose monohydrate, maize starch, povidone K25 (E1201), magnesium stearate (E572)
Tablet film-coating: hypromellose type 2910 (E464), talc (E553b), titanium dioxide (E171)
If you notice these, or any other side effects, especially if they are severe or persistent, take advice from your doctor. For a full list of side effects, please look at your patient leaflet included with your medication.
The following serious side effects have been linked with Qlaira:
Women taking the combined contraceptive pill are at a slightly higher risk of developing a blood clot in a vein, the lungs, or an artery, which can lead to a stroke or a heart attack. The risk is higher for smokers and women who are obese.
Stop taking Qlaira and contact your doctor straight away if you notice any of the following:
- stabbing pains and/or unusual swelling in one leg,
- pain on breathing or coughing,
- coughing up blood,
- sudden breathlessness,
- sudden severe chest pain,
- migraine or severe headaches,
- sudden disturbance in vision, hearing or speech,
- sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body,
- fainting, collapse,
- epileptic seizure,
- significant rise in blood pressure,
- itching of the whole body,
- yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes (jaundice),
- severe stomach pain,
- severe depression,
- or if you think you could be pregnant.
Contraceptive pills are a reliable way of reducing your risk of getting pregnant from sex. Zava offers most common brands of pill, so you can order your preferred brand by visiting our contraceptive pill service page.
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