NORETHINDRONE (nor eth IN drone) prevents ovulation and pregnancy. It belongs to a group of medications called contraceptives. This medication is a progestin hormone.
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
Blood vessel disease or blood clots
Breast, cervical, or vaginal cancer
An unusual or allergic reaction to norethindrone, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. You may take it with or without food. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take this medication at the same time each day and in the order directed on the package. Do not take your medication more often than directed.
Contact your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed. This medication has been used in female children who have started having menstrual periods.
A patient package insert for the product will be given with each prescription and refill. Read this sheet carefully each time. The sheet may change frequently.
What if I miss a dose?
Try not to miss a dose. Every time you miss a dose or take a dose late your chance of pregnancy increases. When 1 pill is missed (even if only 3 hours late), take the missed pill as soon as possible and continue taking a pill each day at the regular time (use a back-up method of birth control for the next 48 hours). If more than 1 dose is missed, use an additional birth control method for the rest of your pill pack until menses occurs. Contact your care team if more than 1 dose has been missed.
What may interact with this medication?
Do not take this medication with any of the following:
Amprenavir or fosamprenavir
This medication may also interact with the following:
Antibiotics or medications for infections, especially rifampin, rifabutin, rifapentine, and griseofulvin, and possibly penicillins or tetracyclines
Barbiturate medications, such as phenobarbital
Ritonavir or other medications for HIV infection or AIDS
St. John's wort
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
Blood clot—pain, swelling, or warmth in the leg, shortness of breath, chest pain
Gallbladder problems—severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever
Increase in blood pressure
Liver injury—right upper belly pain, loss of appetite, nausea, light-colored stool, dark yellow or brown urine, yellowing skin or eyes, unusual weakness or fatigue
New or worsening migraines or headaches
Stroke—sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, trouble speaking, confusion, trouble walking, loss of balance or coordination, dizziness, severe headache, change in vision
Unusual vaginal discharge, itching, or odor
Worsening mood, feelings of depression
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
Breast pain or tenderness
Dark patches of skin on the face or other sun-exposed areas
Irregular menstrual cycles or spotting
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. You will need a regular breast and pelvic exam and Pap smear while on this medication.
Use an additional method of birth control during the first cycle that you take these tablets.
If you have any reason to think you are pregnant, stop taking this medication right away and contact your care team.
If you are taking this medication for hormone related problems, it may take several cycles of use to see improvement in your condition.
This medication does not protect you against HIV infection (AIDS) or any other sexually transmitted diseases.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
This information is educational only and should not be construed as specific instructions for individual patients nor as a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Talk to your health care provider or pharmacist about the information and instructions. K Health assumes no liability for any use or reliance on this information.