Ectopic Pregnancy

How does the "morning after" pill work? |

The "morning after" pill, which is a type of emergency contraception, works by preventing the release of an egg from the woman's ovary; if no egg is released, pregnancy cannot occur, according to Planned Parenthood. Contrary to popular belief, pregnancy does not occur right after sex, but instead it takes up to 6 days for the egg and sperm to meet after sexual intercourse. This type of emergency contraception is different from the so-called "abortion" pill, and is birth control only; it does not cause an abortion, since there's no pregnancy to abort. Continue Reading Keep Learning When is a woman most likely to get pregnant? How does a conception calendar work? What does it take to impregnate a woman? Credit: Helena Pogreb Carter photography Moment Getty Images Full Answer

When taken with 72 hours of sexual intercourse, levonogestrel pills, which are "morning after" pills sold under the brand names Next Choice One Dose and Plan B One-Step, are up to 89 percent effective. They also continue to reduce pregnancy risk for up to 120 hours following unprotected sex. Their effectiveness reduces as time goes by.

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