What is Microgynon 30?
Microgynon 30 is a contraceptive pill – like all other contraceptive pills, it is prescription-only medication. Microgynon 30 contains both oestrogen and progesterone and is a highly effective contraceptive when taken at the same time every day within a 24 hour window.
How does Microgynon 30 work? – all combined contraceptive pills essentially work in the same way, even if they contain different hormones. All types of hormones used naturally occur in the body. Taking a synthetic version of these hormones tricks your body into behaving as if you were already pregnant, triggering a mechanism that prevents pregnancy. The mucus at the opening of the uterus thickens, which decreases the chance of sperm making its way to the egg. In addition, ovulation is suppressed.
It’s a daily pill – when preventing pregnancy with Microgynon 30, you have to take a pill every day, ideally at the same time. Depending on whether your course consists of 21 or 28 tablets and what pill regime you have discussed with your healthcare provider, you may or may not need to take up to a maximum 7-day break between packs.
Is there an advantage to taking Microgynon 30?
It’s a tried and tested pill – both hormones in Microgynon 30 have been known and used for many years. Its safety has been established and its side-effects are known. Like many other combined hormonal contraceptives, Microgynan 30 can lessen period pain, heavy menstrual bleeding and PMS. In patients who need contraception and suffer from acne or PCOS, Microgynan 30 can also improve some of the symptoms associated with these conditions.
How come there are blister packs with 21 and 28 tablets?
The pack size determines whether you take a break or not – if you choose the 21 tablet option, you will take a pill every day for three weeks, usually followed by a 7-day break before starting the next pack.
If you prefer taking a pill every day without a break, you can opt for a pack with 28 pills (Microgynon 30 ED), in which case you will not need to take a break between packs.
Outside of the manufacturers license, but supported by the UK family planning organisation (FSRH) are tailored regimes where 21-day packs may be taken with no breaks, shorter breaks or with less frequent breaks. These regimes are discussed in more detail further down this page.
Although these tailored regimes may reduce the frequency of bleeding and any pill withdrawal symptoms, irregular bleeding may be more common. We would recommend discussing which regime may be best suited to your needs with your healthcare provider.
What are the 7 extra pills in the 28 pack? – the tablets to be taken during the fourth week of your pack will be placebos, so they won’t contain any hormones. The idea is you’re still taking pills during the 7 day break so you don’t have to plan when to start taking pills again.
Why do people go for the 28 pack? – some women find it helpful to take a tablet daily because they worry about forgetting to restart the pill after the 7-day break. Missing pills can increase your risk of getting pregnant so it’s important you don’t forget.