Skip to content

    Birth Control Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    What Is Vaginal Contraceptive Film?

    Vaginal contraceptive film is a paper-thin film that has a spermicide in it. A woman can place it in her vagina on or near the cervix (the entrance to the uterus), where the film dissolves in seconds. The spermicide in it works for about an hour.

    You should wait at least 15 minutes after inserting the film before having sex. And you must use a new film each time you have intercourse.

    Recommended Related to Birth Control

    Birth Control Implants: Are They Right for Me?

    Birth control implants are devices that go under a woman's skin. They release a hormone that prevents pregnancy. Two similar implants available in the U.S. are Implanon and Nexplanon, which is gradually replacing Implanon. Each implant is a plastic rod about the size of a matchstick. The rods contain a form of the hormone progesterone called etonogestrel.

    Read the Birth Control Implants: Are They Right for Me? article > >

    How Effective Is It?

    As long as you use the film consistently -- and the right way -- it’s 74%-94% effective. That means that out of 100 women who rely on it alone, six to 26 will get pregnant in a typical year.

    If the man also wears a condom, that helps prevent pregnancy. Together, spermicides (like that in the film) and condoms are about 97% effective.

    Where Can I Get Vaginal Contraceptive Film?

    It’s available without a prescription in most drugstores.

    Does It Protect Against Sexually Transmitted Diseases?

    No. The male condom provides the best protection from most STDs.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Kecia Gaither, MD, MPH on August 11, 2014

    Today on WebMD

    IUD
    Here's what to expect.
    man opening condom wrapper
    Do you know the right way to use them?
     
    birth control pills
    Here's what to do next.
    doctor and patient
    His and her options.
     
    Concerned teenage girl
    Slideshow
    hospital gown
    Quiz
     
    Birth Control Pills Weight Gain
    Article
    pregnancy test and calendar
    Article
     
    contraceptive pills
    Slideshow
    Young couple looking at each other, serious
    Article
     
    woman reading pregnancy test result
    Article
    calendar
    Article