Gedarel is a low-oestrogen combination contraceptive tablet that combines the oestrogen ethinylestradiol and the progestogen desogestrel.

Gedarel works by using 2 types of female sex hormones. These stop you from getting pregnant by:

  • preventing your ovaries from releasing an egg during ovulation
  • making your cervix mucus thicken and make it harder for sperm to get through
  • thinning the lining of the womb so a fertilised egg is unable to implant itself

If you take Gedarel perfectly, it can be 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

Gedarel will not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases (STIs) such as HIV. To avoid STIs such as HPV, keep your smear tests up to date.

Follow the days and arrows indicated on the foil blister strip to take Gedarel. Each blister strip contains 21 pills good for one month.

This is how you take Gedarel pills:

  1. take 1 pill at the same time each day for 21 days
  2. swallow each pill whole and with water
  3. after 21 days, take a 7 day break where you do not take any pills
  4. during your 7 day break, you’ll have a withdrawal bleed similar to having a period
  5. you’ll still be protected from pregnancy during your 7 day break
  6. on the day after your break finishes, start a new strip of pills
  7. start a new strip of pills even if you’re still having a withdrawal bleed

If you start taking Gedarel during the first 5 days of your period, you’ll be protected from pregnancy straight away.

If you begin taking Gedarel at any other time during your menstrual cycle, you must use condoms for the first 7 days.

What do I do if I forget to take Gedaarel?

If you miss a pill it might affect your contraception. A pill counts as being missed if you have taken it more than 24 hours after you should have taken it.

  • If you have only missed one pill, take it as soon as you remember, even if you have to take 2 pills at once. Continue to take the rest of your pack as usual. You’ll still be protected against pregnancy.
  • If you have missed 2 or more pills, take the most recently missed pill as soon as you remember and leave any previous pills in the strip. This may mean taking two pills at once. Continue to take the rest of your pack as usual. But if you have fewer than 7 pills left in the pack, start a new pack without taking a pill free break. You will need to use extra contraception such as condoms for seven days as you may be at risk of pregnancy.

You may need to take emergency contraception if you missed more than two pills in the first week of your pack. If you are unsure, see your doctor or chemist; you can also message one of our doctors through your account.

Speak to your doctor or pharmacist for advice if you have had unprotected sex and are unsure about what to do after missing a Gedarel pill. This includes if you vomit or have diarrhoea within 3 to 4 hours of taking a Gedarel pill.

What do I do if I take Gedarel twice?

If you take Gedaarel twice, you might start to feel sick, vomit or bleed from your vagina. You should speak to your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

Can pregnant or breastfeeding women take Gedaarel?

If you are pregnant, you should not use Gedaarel. Before taking Gedaarel, see your doctor if you intend to become pregnant or suspect you are pregnant.

If you are breastfeeding you might be able to take Gedarel, but this will depend on when you gave birth. You should speak to your doctor about this before using Gedaarel.

What should I watch out for if I want to stop taking Gedarel?

You will no longer be protected against pregnancy if you stop taking Gedarel. You will need to use an other method of contraception, such as a condom. You will bleed from your vagina a few days following your last Gedarel dose. You should consult your doctor about a new method of contraception to avoid pregnancy.


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