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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Took ECP after unprotected sex. Noticed large clot during period and started spotting. What's wrong?

Answered by
Dr. Aarti Abraham


Practicing since :1998

Answered : 6011 Questions

Posted on Thu, 24 Jan 2013 in Early Pregnancy Signs and Symptoms
Question: Hi,
I had unprotected sex but I took an emergency contraceptive pill the next morning. I got my periods on a regular date. It was not skipped but on the 2nd day of periods a large dark lump slipped out. Periods were clotted. I kept going some brown discharge after periods. 5 days after the end of periods, the brown discharge has increased accompanied by pain on my right side. What could it be?
Answered by Dr. Aarti Abraham 24 minutes later
Thanks for writing to us.
The first possibility in this situation is the emergency contraceptive pill could have failed ( it has a 5 % failure rate if taken within 24 hours, and more if taken later ). In this scenario, you could have had an early pregnancy, which spontaneously miscarried, leading to passage of a dark lump and then brownish spotting afterwards.

Sometimes, intake of emergency contraception, leads to disturbance of the normal menstrual cycle, because these pills contain hormones which affect the normal periods .

Also, conditions like endometrial hyperplasia ( thickening of the lining of the uterus ) and endometriosis ( presence of active uterine lining outside the uterus ) might cause such bleeding pattern, and this is unrelated to the emergency contraception you took.

Stress, anxiety, emotional upheaval, sudden fluctuations in weight, thyroid or adrenal dysfunction , polycystic ovarian disease - all these might cause clotting and heavy periods .

Also, anemia, tuberculosis and some other systemic diseases might lead to this. Disorders of blood clotting rarely cause such symptoms.

One rare possibility is that of ectopic pregnancy ( pregnancy outside the uterus ), in which case you would have such brownish discharge and the pain that you mentioned.

For knowing the exact cause of your problem, I urge you to consult a gynecologist, who would provide a pelvic checkup, abdominal examination, and ultrasound and other blood tests as required to rule out above conditions.

Take care, and feel free to ask for clarifications.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Aarti Abraham 8 minutes later
I just took a home pregnancy test and it came out negative. My haemoglobin is 11.2. So I will take your advice and see a doctor tomorrow.
Thanks for your help.
Answered by Dr. Aarti Abraham 5 minutes later
Hi there,
As your pregnancy test is negative, and you are not anemic, see your gynecologist tomorrow for a proper diagnosis.
Do not worry much, as occasionally a period does get delayed and more than once during the reproductive years of a woman's life, she faces an irregular period or two, particularly after use of hormones, as in the case of emergency pills.
Take care.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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