Efficacy and safety of a levonorgestrel enteric-coated tablet as an over-the-counter drug for emergency contraception: a Phase IV clinical trial
Authors: Chen, Q.-J.; Xiang, W.-P.; Zhang, D.-K.; Wang, R.-P.; Luo, Y.-F.; Kang, J.-Z.; Cheng, L.-N.
Source: Human Reproduction, Volume 26, Number 9, 17 September 2011 , pp. 2316-2321(6)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Abstract:BACKGROUNDAn enteric-coated levonorgestrel emergency contraceptive pill (E-LNG-ECP) is an improved formulation, in terms of side effects, which both dissolves and is absorbed in the intestine. Our aim was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of E-LNG-ECP as an over-the-counter (OTC) drug for emergency contraception (EC) in Chinese women.METHODSA Phase IV clinical trial was conducted in five family planning clinics in China. Women seeking EC within 72 h after unprotected sexual intercourse or contraceptive failure who met the inclusion criteria were recruited. The efficacy of contraception (primary end-point was pregnancy rate), side effects (i.e. safety) and the value of E-LNG-ECP for EC were investigated.RESULTSOf 2445 women (aged 15-48 years) who took E-LNG-ECP with follow-up to determine pregnancy, only five pregnancies (0.2%) occurred. The efficacy of contraception was 95.3%. In total, 6.5% of women reported at least one adverse event after taking E-LNG-ECP, and no serious adverse events were reported. Only four subjects (0.16%) reported vomiting. The incidence of menstrual cycle disturbance was 20.1% after taking E-LNG-ECP. Subjects who had previously taken ECPs (54.4% of these women) rated the acceptability of E-LNG-ECP at 9.36 (on a 10-point scale) higher (P<0.05) than the rating of other LNG-EC pills taken previously.CONCLUSIONSThe study found that E-LNG-ECP was effective, safe and well tolerated as an OTC drug. However, an randomized controlled trial should be performed to compare standard LNG tablets with E-LNG-ECP.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2011-09-17
- Human Reproduction features full-length, peer-reviewed papers reporting original research, clinical case histories, as well as opinions and debates on topical issues. Papers published cover the scientific and medical aspects of reproductive physiology and pathology, endocrinology, andrology, gonad function, gametogenesis, fertilization, embryo development, implantation, pregnancy, genetics, genetic diagnosis, oncology, infectious disease, surgery, contraception, infertility treatment, psychology, ethics and social issues. The highest scientific and editorial standard is maintained throughout the journal along with a rapid rate of publication.