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Drug information

Depo-Provera

POM
Read time: 21 mins
Last updated: 06 May 2020
Published: 03 Aug 2021

4.1 Therapeutic indications

Progestogen: for contraception.

Depo-Provera is indicated for long-term female contraception. Each injection prevents ovulation and provides contraception for at least 12 weeks (+/- 5 days). However, it should be taken into consideration that the return to fertility (ovulation) may be delayed for up to one year (see section 4.4).

Depo-Provera is suitable for use in women who have been appropriately counselled concerning the likelihood of menstrual disturbance and the potential for a delay in return to full fertility.

Depo-Provera may also be used for short-term contraception in the following circumstances:

1) For partners of men undergoing vasectomy, for protection until the vasectomy becomes effective.

2) In women who are being immunised against rubella, to prevent pregnancy during the period of activity of the virus.

3) In women awaiting sterilisation.

Since loss of bone mineral density (BMD) may occur in females of all ages who use Depo-Provera injection long-term (see section 4.4), a risk/benefit assessment, which also takes into consideration the decrease in BMD that occurs during pregnancy and/or lactation, should be considered before giving the injection of Depo-Provera.

Paediatric population (12-18 years)

In adolescents, Depo-Provera may be used, but only after other methods of contraception have been discussed with the patient and considered unsuitable or unacceptable.

It is of the greatest importance that adequate explanations of the long-term nature of the product, of its possible side-effects and of the impossibility of immediately reversing the effects of each injection are given to potential users and that every effort is made to ensure that each patient receives such counselling as to enable her to fully understand these explanations. Patient information leaflets are supplied by the manufacturer. It is recommended that the doctor uses these leaflets to aid counselling of the patient before giving the injection of Depo-Provera.

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