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Mercilon

MERCILON

Treatment options

Buy MERCILON safely, securely and easily in a few simple steps. Start a consultation today to check your eligibility with a prescribing clinician, at no cost to you.

Includes Free Private Prescription & Consultation

This content is intended for UK audiences only

Navin Khosla NowPatientGreen tick
Updated on 26 Mar 2024
pill

What to do if you missed your MERCILON dose

Report suspected side effects or adverse reactions to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) using the Yellow Card Reporting system that covers medicines, vaccines, e-cigarettes and medical device incidents.

Learn more about reporting side effects

Other known brand names

Microgynon 30 ED, Levest, Rigevidon

About Mercilon

Mercilon is a combined hormonal contraceptive used to provide protection against pregnancy. It contains desogestrel, a progesterone and ethinylestradiol, an oestrogen as its active ingredients.

Mercilon works by stopping the release of an egg each month from the ovaries, preventing ovulation during the menstrual cycle. It also makes cervical mucus thicker, making it more difficult for sperm to pass through the cervix, and makes the lining of the womb thinner, so fertilised eggs are less likely to implant in the uterus wall.

NowPatient offers the Mercilon birth control pills for the prevention of pregnancy only, following an online consultation with a prescribing clinician.

Key facts of Mercilon

  • For the prevention of pregnancy
  • There is no evidence that the Mercilon pill causes weight gain
  • Mercilon has some common side effects which include headache and migraine
  • It can be dangerous if you take Mercilon with certain medications. If you’re not sure if it is safe, discuss this with the prescribing clinician
  • Mercilon will not prevent the transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Who is Mercilon not suitable for?

Mercilon may not be suitable for some people. To make sure it’s safe for you, speak to the prescribing clinician before taking Mercilon if you:

  • Are allergic to the active ingredients desogestrel or ethinylestradiol, or inactive ingredients such as lactose
  • Have ever had a blood clot in the leg or lungs
  • Have a family history of heart attacks or stroke
  • Have ever had angina or transient ischaemic attack
  • Suffer from migraines with aura
  • Have a liver disease or any other liver problems
  • Have kidney failure
  • Have ever had breast cancer or cancer of the cervix, vagina or uterus
  • Have unexplained vaginal bleeding
  • Have suffered from jaundice, pemphigoid gestationis (a rash involving blisters of the hands and feet), or pruritus while pregnant
  • Have a family history of breast cancer
  • Have diabetes
  • Have Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Have haemolytic uraemic syndrome, high blood cholesterol, or sickle cell anaemia
  • Have epilepsy
  • Have systemic lupus erythematosus

How and where to get Mercilon?

Mercilon is available with a prescription only. It is not available over the counter at a pharmacy.

NowPatient does not allow customers to buy Mercilon directly. Our service is certified, safe and effective, and we only ever treat conditions. If you book a consultation with a prescribing clinician for a contraceptive, you can discuss if Mercilon is a suitable treatment option for you.

At the end of the consultation, the clinician will decide if a treatment plan is suitable for you. If it is, the clinician will issue you with a prescription which can then be ordered, paid for and delivered directly to your chosen address by NowPatient.

Dosage and strength for Mercilon for contraception

Mercilon pills are available in tablet form containing 20mcg of ethinylestradiol and 150mcg of desogestrel.

Information about how to take Mercilon for contraception

Take 1 Mercilon tablet each day, at the same time for 21 days. After 21 days, you will take a 7 day break from taking Mercilon tablets. You should expect a withdrawal bleed during your pill-free week. Start a new pack of Mercilon tablets on day 8. Take your first tablet in order of the day of the week and follow the directions printed on the pack.

If you forget to take a Mercilon tablet, take the missed pill as soon as you are able to do so. You will need to use extra precautions such as a condom for the next 7 days. Also, read the patient information leaflet or speak to your healthcare provider if you need further medical advice.

What happens if you take too much Mercilon?

If you take more than prescribed, then it can lead to some unpleasant side effects. You should talk to your doctor or reach out to one of our prescribing clinicians, if you have taken too much Mercilon and you experience any of the following side effects.

What are the side effects of Mercilon?

Side effects of Mercilon are split into common and serious.

Common side effects include:

  • Breast tenderness
  • Breast pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weight changes
  • Breakthrough bleeding between periods
  • Mood changes
  • Headache and migraine
  • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Vaginal thrush
  • High blood pressure
  • Hair loss

Serious side effects include:

  • Increased risk of blood clots
  • Cervical cancer
  • Deep vein thrombosis (clot in your leg)
  • Pulmonary embolism (clot in your lung)
  • Severe diarrhoea

If you experience any serious side effects, you should contact NHS 111.

If you experience a serious allergic reaction with the signs shown below you should contact emergency services on 999.

  • Hives
  • Your lips, mouth, throat or tongue suddenly become swollen
  • You’re breathing very fast or struggling to breathe (you may become very wheezy or feel like you’re choking or gasping for air)
  • Your throat feels tight or you’re struggling to swallow
  • Your skin, tongue or lips turn blue, grey or pale (if you have black or brown skin, this may be easier to see on the palms of your hands or soles of your feet)
  • You suddenly become very confused, drowsy or dizzy
  • Someone faints and cannot be woken up

Always report adverse effects to the MHRA yellow card reporting system. You can read more about this here How and where do I report side effects of my medication? – NowPatient

Information about taking Mercilon at the same time as other medications or herbal supplements

There is not enough evidence to suggest there are any drug interactions between herbal supplements and Mercilon. In any event, you should let your prescribing clinician know if you are taking any herbal supplements or other medications such as:

  • Epilepsy treatments – phenytoin or carbamazepine
  • Rifampicin
  • HIV medicines – ritonavir or efavirenz
  • Hepatitis C medicines – telaprevir or boceprevir
  • Antifungal medicines – ketoconazole or griseofulvin
  • St John’s Wort
  • Medicines for high blood pressure, chest pain or irregular heartbeats – diltiazem or verapamil

Why might Mercilon not work for contraception?

Mercilon may not work for you and common reasons may be:

  • Missed pills
  • Taking other medicines that interfere with Mercilon
  • Mercilon not being absorbed due to vomiting and diarrhoea

Can Mercilon taken for contraception be taken long term?

Using medication like Mercilon is safe, provided your doctor has approved it. You should speak to your doctor when deciding to stay on hormonal contraception long term.

Is there a herbal Mercilon?

No. Herbal Mercilon does not exist. If you have been marketed such a formulation, it may be fake.

Can women use Mercilon?

Women can take Mercilon for contraception, but it is not advised when breast-feeding. Speak to your doctor if you are considering taking Mercilon while you are breast-feeding.

Should I avoid any particular food or drink when taking Mercilon?

You can eat and drink normally when taking Mercilon

Alternatives to Mercilon

Alternative methods of contraception include:

  • Implants
  • Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
  • Oral birth control pills (combined oral contraceptive pill and progestogen only pill)
  • Vaginal rings
  • Barrier method – condoms, diaphragms
  • Tubal ligation and vasectomy
  • Emergency contraception

Sources

Medicines – Mercilon

Contraception – NHS

Medical Disclaimer

NowPatient has taken all reasonable steps to ensure that all material is factually accurate, complete, and current. However, the knowledge and experience of a qualified healthcare professional should always be sought after instead of using the information on this page. Before taking any drug, you should always speak to your doctor or another qualified healthcare provider.

The information provided here about medications is subject to change and is not meant to include all uses, precautions, warnings, directions, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or negative effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a particular medication does not imply that the medication or medication combination is appropriate for all patients or for all possible purposes.

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