By Laura Beil
Christen Childs woke up on September 12, 2009, in the pitch dark of early morning with what she thought was a pulled muscle in her leg. She reached down to massage the cramp, trying to fathom how her left calf could be so achingly sore when she hadn't made it to the gym in weeks. This was a Saturday — by Monday, her leg was swollen and hot, and when she tried to stand, jolts of pain shot up to her spine. She consulted her brother-in-law, a doctor, and he told her to go to the ER immediately...
Ella is a non-hormonal pill. It contains ulipristal, a non-hormonal drug that blocks the effects of key hormones necessary for conception. It is available only by prescription.
How Does It Work?
Plan B One-Step emergency contraception may prevent pregnancy by temporarily blocking eggs from being released, by stopping fertilization, or by keeping a fertilized egg from becoming implanted in the uterus. Plan B One-Step is taken in one dose with one pill. Its effectiveness depends on how soon you take the pill. It should be taken as soon as possible -- within 72 hours of unprotected intercourse. When Plan B One-Step is taken as directed, it can reduce the chance of pregnancy by close to 90%.
Ella can be taken up to 120 hours after sex. It is taken as one tablet in one dose.
An IUD can be inserted to prevent pregnancy. The device works by stopping implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus within 5 to 7 days after unprotected intercourse.