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Author Topic: Late pill vs missed whats the truth?
Boxerkid1611
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I called the manufactures today of ortho tri cyclen lo. They stated that a pill is not considered missed until it is more then 12 hours past the usual time a pill is taken. The reason I called to ask is my girlfriend sometimes has to take her pill late due to work. Once it was 11 hours late and the second time it was 8 hours late. The informed me, that the pill is still 99.8% effective as long as you take the pill within 12 hrs of your normal time. After that it begins to decrease little by little. Then they did of course suggest perfect use is the same time + or - 4 hours. My question begins with is this information accurate? I mean it does come from the manufacture. Next we always wear condoms. One night (of course the night she took it 11 hours late) We went twice back to back. I went to the bathroom removed the first condom, washed my hands with anti bacterial soap and warm water, then dried off with a towel. I guess by some possible mistake there may have still been a tiny bit of sperm on my finger but I don't think there was. Does this pose a high chance of pregnancy or am I in the clear?

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Robin Lee
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Hi Boxerkid1611,

This is correct. Here's a whole bunch of information on missed vs late pills, and how to handle things:

Three questions about taking the birth control pill (and plenty of answers)


In terms of what you're describing with semen transfer, I think you'd find it helpful to review all the things necessary for reproduction to occur. Take a look:
Where DID I Come From? A Refresher Course in Human Reproduction


A while back, Heather did some calculations on the effectiveness of combining two birth control methods. You might also find this reassuring.

The Buddy System: Effectiveness Rates for Backing Up Your Birth Control With a Second Method


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Robin

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Boxerkid1611
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Hi Robin,
Thank you very much for the information I read through each one. In the first one it talks about taking the pill 12-24 hours late, but it considers it a missed pill. She took it 11 hours late. Does that drop the effectiveness?

Second with the drop of semen that may have been on the second condom, does that present a pregnancy risk? I've heard some say it takes a lot more of then a drop, while others say 1 sperm. I get one sperm fertilizes the egg but would a drop of semen that some how made it through a hand washing and drying create a pregnancy?

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Molias
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If you go back and check that article, it calls a pill over 24 hours "missed" entirely and one over 12 hours late "late." So by that math, 11 hours is just fine.

And the "Where DID I Come From?" article does answer your question about the pregnancy risk of manual sex (even if semen survived handwashing, which it wouldn't).

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Boxerkid1611
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so if someone takes it 11 hours its just fine, 12 hours becomes late but it is still as effective as usual time is that what your saying? So are girls supposed to take it at the same time everyday to increase effectiveness or is it suggested to establish a routine only to help not forget it?

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Molias
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Yep, you're answering your own question here. =) As close to the same time every day is best, but as mentioned in the article above, "the same time" is a fairly large window.

A routine is good because you remember to take the pill that day, and because it makes it more likely that you'll take the pill at a similar time. So, setting a schedule like "take the pill before bed" is helpful even if some nights you go to bed at 10 and other nights you stay up until midnight.

Since you said your girlfriend sometimes takes her pill late because of her work schedule, it might be easier on her if she changes her pill time to something like before bed, or another time during the day when she's likely to remember. If she has a phone or email based alarm system, that's a great way to remember to take a pill.

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Boxerkid1611
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I still a little confused. If she takes it 12 hours late, the pill is still as effective as if she took it on the hour she was supposed to correct?

Seems like that's the correct answer, it almost seems like the time doesn't make a difference, its just the say take it at the same time so she remembers to take it. Do I have that right?

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Boxerkid1611
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were you able to find any additional information on this topic?

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Robin Lee
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The birth control pill needs to be taken every day at around the same time. Should an occasional pill be late, and is taken within 12 hours of when it's usually taken, the effectiveness of the pill isn't considered to be significantly compromised. However, this is only if this happens occasionally. If it happens more than once, especially more than once on consecutive days, a second birth control method should be used through the end of the cycle if engaging in sexual activities that can lead to pregnancy.
Does this help?

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Robin

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Boxerkid1611
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IS there any research or information out there that would show the decrease in effectiveness at 12, 13, or even 14 hours late?

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Karybu
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There's really no way to collect data on that, unfortunately, because the effectiveness of the pill isn't calculated per instance of sexual activity, it's calculated over a year. So if 100 women use the pill perfectly over the span of one year, 1 of them will become pregnant. If those women all use the pill typically - a few late or missed pills here and there, say - then over the span of a year, around 8 of those women would become pregnant at some point. Does that make sense?

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"Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing." -Arundhati Roy

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Archie2415
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I had a question...last friday i had sex with a condom, took plan B just in case, and i had just started birthcontrol, but this week i forgot to take it twice is there any way i could get pregnant? Iam so new to all this that i dont know.

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Archie2415

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Edith_*
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Hi Archie! Welcome to Scaleteen! [Smile]

Can you please make your own thread for your question? You can do that by clicking the "new topic" link at the bottom of any page. That way is easier for us to give you the space you deserve with an on-going conversation.

Thanks! [Smile]

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"Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it's very important that you do it " (...'cause no one else will) -Gandhi-

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