Transdermal Contraceptive Patch

The transdermaI contraceptive patch is an effective weekly hormonal birth control patch that is worn on the skin to prevent pregnancy.

How does it work?

  • The hormones in the patch are continuously absorbed through your skin into your bloodstream.
  • The hormones stop the ovaries from releasing an egg.
  • The hormones thicken the cervical mucus making it difficult for sperm to enter the uterus.

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How effective is it?

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How do I use the patch?

  • Apply your first patch in the first 24 hours of your menstrual period. (This is called Patch Change Day).
  • Wear the patch for 7 days (1 week).
  • On Day 8 (Patch Change Day), remove the patch, throw it away, and apply a new patch to a new area of skin for Week 2.
  • Repeat for Week 3 (Day 15).
  • Do NOT apply a patch for the fourth week. You should get your period during this week without hormones.
  • Begin a new four week cycle by applying a new patch on your normal Patch Change Day.

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Where can I get it?

  • A prescription is needed from your doctor or at Sexual Health Clinics .
  • Generally, if you can take the pill, you can use the patch.

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How much does it cost?

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What are the advantages and disadvantages to using the transdermal contraceptive patch?

Advantages:

  • Convenience of changing a patch just once weekly.
  • Discrete.
  • The patch has the same benefits as the birth control pill .

Disadvantages:

  • Cannot apply to skin that is red, irritated or cut.
  • Do not apply to skin where makeup, lotions, creams, powders or other products have been recently applied.
  • Most common side effects include breast changes (tenderness, enlargement and secretion), headaches, nausea/vomiting in first few cycles.
  • Some women should not use the patch including those with history of blood clots, certain cancers, heart disease, stroke and migraines.
  • May not be as effective in women over 90kg (198 lbs).

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