Last update Feb. 10, 2019

Ulipristal Acetate (Contraceptive)

Very Low Risk

Safe. Compatible. Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Ulipristal acetate is a selective modulator of progesterone receptors. It inhibits or delays ovulation and alters the endometrium.
It is used as an emergency contraceptive for up to 120 hours (5 days) after intercourse and in the treatment of uterine fibroids.

This entry reports on its use as AN EMERGENCY ANTICONCEPTIVE.

Its high percentage of plasma protein binding explains the very small transfer to milk observed, which is at its maximum during the first day: 0.013 mg in total (EMA 2013: 5.2) or 0.023 mg/L (HRA Pharma 2015: 8.3), decreasing to one-seventh in the next 24 hours and still much less over the next 4 days (HRA Pharma 2015: 8.3, EMA 2013: 5.2).

As an emergency contraceptive it is a medication for limited and occasional use and the total relative dose ingested by the infant would be less than 1% in 5 days.

Intestinal absorption by the infant of the low dose excreted in breastmilk would be hindered, since oral bioavailability decreases up to 45% if administered with fat-rich foods, such as breastmilk.

The World Health Organization believes that it can be used as an emergency contraceptive during breastfeeding (Batur 2016, WHO 2015), but its recommendation to interrupt breastfeeding for a week (Sridhar 2017, WHO 2015 p72) is surprising, as it is based solely on the manufacturer's information.

Given the minimal excretion of the product in breastmilk and the absence of adverse effects recorded during breastfeeding, it is difficult to justify the recommendation proposed by other authors or health agencies such as CDC to interrupt breastfeeding for 24 hours (Curtis 2016 Table J1 p93) or 36 hours (Mansour 2009).

See below the information of this related product:


Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM team of health professionals, and are based on updated scientific publications. It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it. The pharmaceutical industry contraindicates breastfeeding, mistakenly and without scientific reasons, in most of the drug data sheets.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.

Other names

Ulipristal Acetate (Contraceptive) is also known as

Ulipristal Acetate (Contraceptive) in other languages or writings:


Ulipristal Acetate (Contraceptive) belongs to this group or family:


Main tradenames from several countries containing Ulipristal Acetate (Contraceptive) in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Oral Bioavail. 100 %
Molecular weight 476 daltons
Protein Binding 98 - 99.5 %
Tmax 0.5 - 2 hours
38 hours
M/P ratio 0.5 - 0.7 -
Theoretical Dose 0.0034 mg/Kg/d
Relative Dose 0.8 - 1 %


  1. Sridhar A, Salcedo J. Optimizing maternal and neonatal outcomes with postpartum contraception: impact on breastfeeding and birth spacing. Matern Health Neonatol Perinatol. 2017 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  2. CDC - Curtis KM, Tepper NK, Jatlaoui TC, Berry-Bibee E, Horton LG, Zapata LB, Simmons KB, Pagano HP, Jamieson DJ, Whiteman MK. U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2016. CDC - MMWR Recommendations & Reports. 2016 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  3. Altshuler AL, Gaffield ME, Kiarie JN. The WHO's medical eligibility criteria for contraceptive use: 20 years of global guidance. Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2015 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  4. HRA Pharma. Ella (Ulipristal). Drug Summary. 2015 Full text (in our servers)
  5. OMS. Criterios médicos de elegibilidad para el uso de anticonceptivos Quinta edición. Who Library. 2015 Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  6. WHO. Department of Reproductive Health and Research World Health Organization. Medical eligibility criteria for contraceptive use: 20 years of global guidance. WHO/RHR/15.07. 2015 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  7. EMA. ellaOne (Ulipristal Acetato). Ficha técnica. 2013 Full text (in our servers)
  8. Mansour D. EllaOne: a second-generation emergency contraceptive? J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care. 2009 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)

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