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APPENDIX K: Emergency Contraceptive Pills

This table is for information only and should not serve as the sole source for prescribing information or clinical decision-making.

Trade name Pills per dose Ethinyl estradiol
per dose (mµ g)
per dose (mg)
Cost *
Ovral (a, b) 2 white pills 100 0.50 $47
Alesse 5 pink pills 100 0.50 $29
Levlite 5 pink pills 100 0.50 $28
Nordette (a) 4 light orange pills 120 0.60 $30
Levlen (a) 4 light orange pills 120 0.60 $30
Levora 4 white pills 120 0.60 $27
Lo/Ovral (a, b) 4 white pills 120 0.60 $31
Triphasil (a) 4 yellow pills 120 0.50 $29
Tri-Levlen (a) 4 yellow pills 120 0.50 $28
Trivora 4 pink pills 120 0.50 $28
Ovrette (b) 20 yellow pills 0 0.75 $31
Dedicated Products
Preven (c, d) 2 blue pills 100 0.50 $20
Plan B (d) 1 white pill 0 0.75 $20

* Cost to the pharmacist based on wholesale price, rounded to nearest dollar amount, as listed in Red Book. Montvale, NJ: Medical Economics Data; 1999.

(a) These products were declared safe and effective for use as emergency contraception by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in February 1997. The other products listed are bioequivalents.

(b) The progestin in Ovral, Lo/Ovral andOvrette is norgestrel, which contains two isomers, only one of which (levonorgestrel) is bioactive; the amount of norgestrel in each tablet is twice the amount of levonorgestrel.

(c) Preven comes with a pregnancy test kit.

(d) Both Plan B and Preven are labeled by the FDA for emergency contraceptive use.

NOTE: Course of therapy is one dose taken within 120 hours of unprotected intercourse; second dose taken 12 hours later. Alternately, a single dose of 1.5 mg of levonorgestrel was found to be as effective as the standard 2 dose levonorgestrel regimen.

Information from Twelve brands of emergency contraceptive pills in the United States. J Am Med Women's Assoc 1998; 53:213.

Adapted from Wertheimer RE. Emergency postcoital contraception. American Family Physician 2000; 62:2287-92.

Additional References:

American College of Emergency Physicians. Evaluation and Management of the Sexually Assaulted or Sexually Abused Patient. Second edition. 2016. (PDF)

Arowojolu AO, Okewole IA, Adekunle AO. Comparative evaluation of the effectiveness and safety of two regimens of levonorgestrel for emergency contraception in Nigerians. Contraception 2002; 66:269-73.

International Consortium for Emergency Contraception.

Society Of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC) Clinical Practice Guidelines. Emergency Contraception. No. 131, August 2003.

von Hertzen H, et al. Low dose mifepristone and two regimens of levonorgestrel for emergency contraception: a WHO multicentre randomised trial. Lancet December 7, 2002; 360:1803-10. In Walling, AD. Effective single-dose emergency contraception. American Family Physician 2003: May 1.

Wertheimer, RE. Emergency postcoital contraception. American Family Physician 2000; 62:2287-92.

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Appendices  Appendix B: A Sample Continuum of Medical History Questions and Confidence in the Responses  Appendix C: Body Diagrams  Appendix D: Burn Assessment - Rule of Nines  Appendix F: Common Types of Diaphyseal Fractures Seen in Childhood  Appendix G: Findings That May Be Confused with Abuse  Appendix H: Differential Diagnosis Table  Appendix I: List of Community Services  Appendix J: Supplemental Resources  Appendix K: Emergency Contraceptive Pills 

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