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Mercilon 28-Desogestrel plus Ethinyloestradiol


Mercilon 28 is a combined oral hormonal contraceptive, commonly known as a ‘Birth Control Pill’ or ‘the Combined Pill’ that has been prescribed to prevent you from getting pregnant. Oral contraceptives are a very effective method of birth control. When taken correctly (without missing tablets) the chance of becoming pregnant is very low. Mercilon 28 consists of 21 large white tablets, each containing 2 active ingredients: 20 micrograms of ethinyloestradiol (an oestrogen) and 150 micrograms of desogestrel (a progestogen) and 7 small white inactive tablets (first row of the strip). Because of the small amounts of different female hormones in the active tablets, Mercilon 28 is considered a low-dose combined oral contraceptive.

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How to take Mercilon 28: Tablets must be taken in the order directed on the package every day at about the same time with some liquid as needed. One tablet is to be taken daily, starting with the large (active) tablets for 21 consecutive days followed by the small (placebo) tablets for 7 days. Each subsequent pack is started immediately following the last placebo tablet. During the placebo days a withdrawal bleed usually occurs. This usually starts on day 2-3 after the last active tablet and may not have finished before the next pack is started.

Each pack of Mercilon 28 consists of:

  • 21 large (6 mm diameter), white, round biconvex tablets coded TR/4 on one side and ORGANON and a star on the other side, and containing desogestrel (a progestogen) 0.15 mg, ethinyloestradiol (an oestrogen) 0.02 mg; and
  • 7 small (4.5 mm diameter), white, round, flat tablets with bevelled edges, coded KH/2 on one side and a square on the other side, and containing no active ingredients.


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