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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » EXPERT ADVICE » Emergencies and Crises » Antibiotics

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Author Topic: Antibiotics
Stargirl85
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I just had a question regarding antibiotics and birth control.

I was on a heavy dose of antibiotics just over a week ago for about 2 weeks. I believe my last antibiotic pill would have been last Sunday morning (possibly even Monday..).

Sunday is the day I started my new pack of birth control. I have been taking my pills at almost the same time everyday, give or take maybe 2 hours late twice within this week (but still within the 3 hour time frame so it's not considered late, right?). I had unprotected sex last night and I'm just wondering if I am still less protected because of the antibiotic use a week ago? I believe that Sunday was also one of the days that I took my BC two hours late, and I think the first pill is the most important to take on time? Don't know if that matters but figured I'd say it all..

How do antibiotics work? Are you only less protected while taking the antibiotics or does it take a long time to clear out of your system, making it possible to get pregnant once done the antibiotics as well? Should I consider plan b, even if I am on BC.. just in case?

Thanks

Posts: 104 | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Robin Lee
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HI Stargirl85,

Two hours later than your usual time isn't considered a late pill, so you don't need to worry about that.

What we know about certain antibiotics (and other medications) is that they can interact with birth control. What that means specifically isn't always known. But, since you started your new pack of pills as you were finishing up the cycle of antibiotics, you don't have to worry about that interaction.

--------------------
Robin

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Stargirl85
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Hi robin,

Okay thanks. So just curious, the whole use back up a week before/after the antibiotics as well does not apply? Just be more careful when on them?

And i don't know if this matters but I had to take a laxative Thursday night. This would have been about 4-5 hours after taking my BC and about 24 hours before unprotected sex. That in combination with the antibiotics, I'm still 100% protected if I have been taking my pills on time since the start last Sunday?

Thanks

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Robin Lee
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Well, you are never 100% protected while on the pill. The success rate has been found to be 92% with typical use and 99% with perfect use.

It never hurts to back up your pill with a secondary method. In fact, it increases contraceptive success rates notably in some cases.

Taking a laxative 4 or 5 hours after taking a pill shouldn't negatively affect it; by that point it's been broken down and the body is doing what it needs to with it.

You can always ask a pharmacist if you have concerns like this, but nothing you're saying here sounds like a serious compromise of the pill's effectiveness.

--------------------
Robin

Posts: 6066 | From: Washington DC suburbs | Registered: Dec 2011  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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