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Evra

The evra patch is a method of combined hormonal contraception that’s placed on the skin. It gives a daily dose of the hormones oestrogen and progesterone, and works in a similar way to the combined pill. It isn’t suitable for women who can’t take oestrogen, but one benefit of using the patch is the fact that you don’t have to remember it every day; just once a week on patch change day. Evra, like the combined oral contraceptive, is over 99% effective at preventing pregnancy, though it can’t protect you against STIs, so if you’re unsure of your partner’s sexual history, use a barrier method alongside it. Evra can be placed almost anywhere on the body expect from your breasts and genital area. Change your patch on days 8 & 15, then take a 7 –day break on day 22. Resume using the patch immediately after your 7 day break.

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What is the Evra patch?

The Evra patch is a form of combined hormonal contraception. Similar to the combined pills, Evra contains synthetic versions of oestrogen and progesterone, hormones that the ovaries naturally produce. Unlike the pills, Evra is a transdermal patch, meaning that it’s applied to your skin rather than taken orally and digested. One benefit of this is the fact that it isn’t affected by sickness or diarrhoea. With oral contraceptives, if you vomit shortly after taking one, you risk not being protected against pregnancy, but as the hormones from the patch aren’t digested, you’re still protected if you do vomit.

How does the Evra patch work?

Evra releases a daily dose of hormones into your body via a patch on the skin. These hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, work together to do three things:

  • Stop ovulation
  • Thicken the mucus in the cervix
  • Thin the lining of the womb

These three changes make it incredibly difficult for sperm to fertilise an egg, giving the patch over a 99% success rate when used correctly (though no contraceptive method is 100% effective). The general science behind the patch is the same as if you’ve ever taken combined oral contraceptives (COC), as the hormones work in the same way in your body, it’s just how they get into your system that’s different.

How do you use the Evra patch?

If you’re currently part way through a cycle, or taking other contraception, it is advised that you wait until the first day of your period before starting Evra. On this day, you should apply your first patch to an area free of hair, broken or irritated skin, and somewhere where it won’t be rubbed off by tight clothing. You can place evra almost anywhere on your body excluding your breasts and genital area. Keep your patch on for 7 days, changing it on day 8, and again on day 15. When you reach day 22, take your patch off and begin your 7-day break (during this time, don’t apply another patch or use oral contraceptives). You can resume again after 7 days, making sure you apply the hormonal patch on the same day of the week as you did last time. When used this way, Evra is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

I forgot to put my patch on after the 7 day break

Once you remember, put a new patch on immediately. This will give you a new “day 1” and patch change day to what you previously had. Because you’re now out of sync with your normal contraceptive routine, it’s a good idea to use additional contraception such as condoms until day 8 (your patch change day). If you think you may already be pregnant, make an appointment with your GP for a test, and they will advise you on what to do in terms of contraception.

My evra patch has come off

If your patch has already come off, or is peeling around the edges, your next steps depend on how long it’s been like that. If it has been less than a day, you can either re-apply the same patch or put on a new one. You should still be protected against pregnancy. If the original patch has lost its stickiness, or has become stuck to itself, something else, or material from clothing, dispose of it and just use a brand new ptch to make sure you’re still getting the right dose and are as protected as you can be. If your patch has been loose or absent for more than 2 days, you’ll need to apply a new one and re-start a 4-week cycle. This will give you a new day 1 and new patch change day. You should use additional contraception until your next patch change day (day 8).

Who can use Evra?

Most women who haven’t been diagnosed with major health problems can use Evra. If you’ve previously taken the combined oral contraceptive, you should also be able to use the patch (though not in conjunction as this would effectively be a double dose of hormones). You won’t be able to use the patch if you:

  • Have or have ever had thrombosis (blood clot)
  • Have heart disease
  • Have ever had a stroke
  • Have systematic lupus erythematosus
  • Have a heart abnormality or circulatory disease
  • Have migraines with aura
  • Have breast cancer or its associated gene
  • Have an active disease of the liver or gall bladder
  • Have diabetes
  • Have been immobile for a long period of time
  • Use a wheelchair
  • Are going to be at high altitude for more than a week
  • Are over 35
  • You smoke (not including vaping)
  • Are obese (BMI of 35 and above)

If you fall into any of the above categories, make an appointment with your GP who’ll be able to advise you on other methods of contraception such as the progestogen only pill (POP) and potentially suggest the implant or IUS.

What are the side effects of the evra patch?

Side effects of the evra patch are similar to the combined pill, as they carry the same hormones. However, with the patch, you may notice skin irritation at the site of application due to it being a transdermal method rather than oral. Some side effects you may experience are:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Breast tenderness
  • Thrush
  • Mood swings / feeling depressed
  • Migraine
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach ache, bloating
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Acne
  • Rash
  • Muscle spasms
  • Changes to period
  • Weight gain
  • Fatigue
  • Feeling generally unwell

You may not experience any side effects at all, but the ones listed above are the most commonly reported from a group of women who used the patch in a study. Risks of contraception Hormonal contraception is often looked at with scepticism due to some of its associated risks, but it’s important to know that these risks are only small, and if you have any conditions that may make them greater, no GP would prescribe the medication to you unless they thought the benefits would outweigh the potential dangers

  • Breast cancer: some types of contraception have been linked to a slight increase in the risk of developing breast cancer. This risk is only small, but stay aware of any changes to your breasts, and inform your GP if you have a family history of breast cancer
  • Cervical cancer: it has been noted that long-term use of combined contraception can increase a woman’s risk of cervical cancer, but again, this risk is only small. To minimise your chances, make sure you regularly attend your smear test
  • Blood clots: the hormones used in combined contraception can increase your risk of thrombosis (blood clots). Stay aware of any symptoms such as sudden breathlessness, unusual swelling in one leg, pain when breathing or coughing, coughing up blood, sudden chest pain, migraine, sudden vision, hearing or speech changes, sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body, and collapsing. If you experience any of these symptoms, remove your patch and go to A&E where they can fully examine you.
Dosage Instructions
Apply ONE patch one the first day of your period. Change your patch on days 8 and 15. On day 22, go patch-free for 7 days and then repeat the cycle.
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Delivery Charges

The following delivery methods are currently available within the UK: All orders are sent in discreet, plain packaging.

UK Standard Delivery, £1.99

Order before 12pm to have your order delivered using Royal Mail Tracked 48 Service

standard UK delivery within 3-5 working days

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UK Express Delivery, £2.99

Order before 12pm to have your order delivered using the Express delivery service* (deliveries are made Monday - Saturday)

If you order after 12pm, your order will be dispatched the next working day and will be with you within 48 hours once dispatched. This excludes weekends and bank holidays

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Order before 12pm to have your order delivered using Royal Mail Special Delivery Service, which includes Saturday deliveries.

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Royal Mail Special Delivery Next Day Before 1pm, £7.99 (This service includes Saturday)

Order before 12pm to have your order delivered before 1pm next day using Royal Mail Special Delivery service, this also includes Saturday deliveries.

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Royal Mail Special Delivery Next Day Before 9am, £14.99 (This service includes Saturday)

Order before 12pm to have your order delivered before 9am next day using Royal Mail Special Delivery service, this also includes Saturday deliveries.

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DPD Next Day Delivery, £4.99 (Monday - Friday only. This service does not include Saturday)

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Next Day Delivery, by 12 Noon, £9.99 (Monday - Friday only. This service does not include Saturday)

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 12 noon the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Next Day Delivery, by 10:30am, £14.99  (Monday - Friday only. This service does not include Saturday)

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 10:30am the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Saturday Delivery, £14.99

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered the following Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Saturday Delivery, by 12:00am, £21.99

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 12:00am Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Saturday Delivery, by 10:30am, £29.99

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 10:30am Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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