Cipla introduces i-pill helpline on emergency contraception

Emergency contraception (EC), a safeguard against unintended pregnancies, though an available option is not well known in India. To dispel the several myths associated with emergency contraception and provide information on the newly launched i-pill, Cipla recently launched the 'i-pill helpline' service.

Emergency contraception is the only method a couple can use to prevent pregnancy after a contraceptive failure. i-pill is the first single-pill emergency contraception from Cipla to be made available over the counter in the Indian market today.

Cipla says i-pill is not an abortion pill but an emergency contraceptive pill. Abortion pills contain drugs known as anti-progestins, which stop the development of a pregnancy after it has occurred.

On the other hand, emergency contraceptive pills like i-pill, which contain common female hormones prevent pregnancy in the first place and so do not cause an abortion.

Cipla's i-pill prevents pregnancy by stopping or delaying release ovulation (release of an egg), blocking fertilisation by affecting the egg or sperm, or preventing implantation by making the lining of the uterus inhospitable for pregnancy and therefore has to be taken within 72 hours or three days of contraception.

i-pill contains the hormone levonorgestrel, and when taken immediately offers maximum protection against pregnancy. It is a one-pill packet and can prevent pregnancy by up to 89 per cent if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sexual intercourse. It is available without a prescription at all chemist outlets.