New “Morning After Pill” Ella to Hit Shelves Soon

By EmilyM

No matter how careful you are when it comes to preventing unwanted pregnancy, it’s a simple fact. If you are sexually active, there is a chance contraception can fail at one time or another in your life. Whether it was abandoned altogether or was used but failed, couples will soon have another option when it comes to emergency contraception.

In fact, in August 2010, the Food and Drug Administration approved the main active ingredient, uliprista, and according to the manufacturer, Watson Pharmaceuticals, the pill should be available before 2011. It was stated that it would be in fourth quarter of 2010 and as we are soon approaching it’s release, it helps to understand what it is and what it will offer.

So what does this mean for women?
The opportunity to now choose between two main types of emergency contraceptive pills – the already established Plan B pill or the new Ella. When both are used as directed they  should provide the same outcome, meaning no unplanned pregnancy, however, there are several key differences between the two types.

Here is a quick comparison of the two products:

  • Plan B  is most effective within 3 days of unprotected sex or birth control failure.
  • Ella is most effective for up to 5 days of unprotected sex or birth control failure.
  • Plan B is available over the counter for women 17 and over (and prescription for those under 17)
  • Ella will be available by prescription only
  • PlanB is progestin based
  • Ella is uliprista based

Like most things in life, having more choices  can open up opportunities for a wider group of people. It is believed that right now nearly half of all US pregnancies are unplanned – perhaps with greater access to emergency contraception, more women will have an opportunity to make the decision that is right for her and her partner.