Skip to Content

Injectable Contraception, Ambulatory Care

Injectable contraception

is birth control medicine that is given as a shot. This medicine helps prevent pregnancy.

Types of injectable contraception:

  • Medroxyprogesterone acetate is given once every 12 weeks on days 1 to 5 of your menstrual cycle. This type of shot may decrease blood loss and pain during your period. It also decreases your risk for anemia (low red blood cell count).
  • Norethisterone enanthate is given to protect you for 8 weeks. It is used if your partner has had a recent vasectomy and you are waiting for it to heal.

Use injectable contraception as directed:

Your healthcare provider will tell you when you can start injectable contraception. You may need to use a different method of contraception until the shots take effect. You may need blood or urine tests before you start this medicine. You may use this method in any of the following situations:

  • During your menstrual cycle: If you have regular menstrual cycles, you should get your first shot within 7 days after your cycle starts. If you have irregular bleeding or no periods, you may have the shot any time.
  • When you switch methods of contraception: You may need added protection when you switch from one method of contraception to another.
  • After you give birth: If you are breastfeeding, the first shot is given between 6 weeks and 6 months after you give birth. If you are not breastfeeding, you may have the shot any time.

Seek immediate care for the following symptoms:

  • Heavy vaginal bleeding
  • Unprotected sex before you have your shots

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Hide