Ulipristal Acetate (30mg)

Medication Information Leaflet


What is this medication for?

There are 2 types of emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy; the pill method and the insertion of a device called the copper intrauterine device (IUD). A copper IUD can prevent pregnancy because its presence is toxic to sperms. A woman might use emergency contraception if she forgot to take her birth control pills, if the condom broke or slipped off during sexual intercourse, or if no birth control methods were used.


Ella® (ulipristal acetate), also known as “Morning-After Pill”, is one of the pill methods. It is a safe and effective way to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sexual intercourse.

How should I take/use this medication?

  • You may take this medication with or without food
  • You may take the medication at any time during the menstrual cycle. 
  • Take one tablet (30mg) as soon as possible, within 120 hours (5 days) of intercourse. 
  •  Do not repeat the medication during the same menstrual cycle  due to limited information
  • If you vomit within 3 hours after taking the medicine, take another tablet as a replacement. Consult a doctor to get an additional dose of the medicine.

You may still get pregnant if there is sexual intercourse after taking the pill. Use a condom or any other type of birth control method if you have sexual intercourse after taking the emergency contraceptive pill.

What should I do if I forget to take/use this medication?

The tablet works best the sooner you take it after having unprotected sex. It can only prevent you from becoming pregnant, if you take it within 5 days of unprotected sex. Please contact your healthcare professional if it is more than 5 days of unprotected sex.

What precautions should I take?

Inform your healthcare professional if: 

  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication
  • You may already be pregnant, or breastfeeding
  • You are taking any other medications, including supplements, traditional medications and herbal remedies 
  • You have severe liver disease, severe asthma or any other medical conditions.

What are some common side-effects of this medication?

  • Breakthrough bleeding
    • You may experience some spotting or bleeding within 2 – 3 days after taking the tablets.
    • In the majority of cases, your next menses should start as expected or within 5 – 7 days of the expected date.
    • However, if your menses is more than 7 days later, it is recommended to get a pregnancy test.
    • If you experience heavy or prolonged periods of bleeding or very bad stomach pain, you should consult your healthcare professional.
  • Nausea and vomiting
    • Take the medication after food to reduce this side effect. 
  • Headache
    • You may take Paracetamol to manage the headache.
  • Breast tenderness
  • Dizziness, Fatigue
    • Avoid activities that require mental alertness and avoid using heavy machineries.

What are some rare but serious side-effects that I need to seek medical advice immediately?

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following: 

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Itchy skin rashes over your whole body

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately

What food or medication should I avoid when I take this medication?

Some medications may prevent this medication from working effectively. Inform your healthcare professional if you have taken any medication during the last 4 weeks to ensure the correct type of emergency contraceptive has been prescribed for you.

What else should I know about this medication?

You can start/restart hormonal contraception e.g. birth control pills 5 days after taking Ella®. You must also use a barrier method (for example: condoms, diaphragm, and spermicides) until your next menstrual period, or not have sexual intercourse.

Using a hormonal birth control method and taking Ella® at the same time can reduce the effectiveness of both medications.

How should I store this medication?

Store in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight. Keep this medication away from children.

How should I throw away this medication safely?

Pack this medication into a black trash bag and seal it tightly before throwing into the rubbish chute or bin. 


Please take note that the above is not a complete list of all possible side effects. If you have any concerns about your medication or if you have other side effects that you think are caused by this medication, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

If you take more than the recommended dose, please seek medical advice immediately. The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.

This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. The content does not reflect drug availability and supply information in pharmacies and healthcare institutions. You are advised to check with the respective institutions for such information.


Last updated on Oct 2022


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