• Contraceptive Pill used to prevent pregnancy
  • Thickens the mucus lining of the womb making it harder for Sperm to enter
  • Each pill is marked with a specific day of the week. Take one pill every day for 21 days
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What is Dianette?

Dianette is a combined contraceptive pill that contains the active ingredients cyproterone acetate and ethinylestradiol.

When taken correctly, the combined contraceptive pill is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

It is a prescription-only medicine (POM).

What is Dianette used to treat?

Dianette is a contraception pill used in the prevention of pregnancy. It will not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases (STDs); you should still use a condom to prevent the risk of STDs.

Dianette is also prescribed as a treatment for women who suffer from skin conditions like acne, very oily skin and excessive hair growth. It is normally only prescribed to treat skin conditions when you have not responded to other anti-acne treatments, such as topical creams and antibiotics.

How does Dianette work?

Dianette contains the active ingredients cyproterone acetate and ethinylestradiol; this combination is known as co-cyprindiol. Cyproterone acetate is an anti-androgen and ethinylestradiol is a synthetic version of oestrogen. These ingredients work together to prevent pregnancy in three different ways:

  • Stopping the ovaries from releasing an egg
  • Thickening the mucus in the cervix, making it much harder for sperm to enter the womb
  • Preventing the womb lining from thickening enough for an egg to grow within it

As a treatment for acne, Dianette works to reduce the action of androgens (male sex hormones that stimulate hair and skin growth, as well as oil production). This reduces sebum production and excessive hair growth. You should notice that your skin is less oily after taking this medication for a few weeks, although it can take up to three months for Dianette to take a strong effect.

How to take Dianette

Dianette packs contain either one strip of 21 tablets or three strips of 21 tablets. The strips are marked with a day of the week, indicating which day you should take each pill. Start taking the pill on the correctly marked day.

  1. Take one pill each day until you have taken all 21 pills.
  2. After you have taken all 21 pills, you will have a break of seven days where no pills are taken. You will have a bleed similar to a period during this break.
  3. Start to take the next strip of 21 pills immediately after your seven day break.

Who can take Dianette?

Before taking Dianette, you should tell your doctor if you have any illnesses or conditions. Dianette may make some conditions worse.

In particular, you should inform your doctor if:

  • You are using any other hormonal contraceptives
  • You have or have ever had breast cancer
  • You have ever had a heart attack or a stroke
  • You have or have had a blood clot in any part of your body
  • You have or have ever had any symptoms of a heart attack, stroke, or a mini-stroke
  • You have any conditions that may increase the risk of a blood clot in your arteries
  • You have very high blood pressure
  • You have ever had a severe liver disease
  • You have an intolerance to certain sugars
  • You have ever had liver tumours or any abnormalities in your liver
  • You are allergic to Dianette or any of the ingredients contained in the medication
  • Do not use this treatment if you have hepatitis C and are taking any medicines that contain ombitasvir, paritaprevir, ritonavir or dasabuvir.

Some conditions may be made worse by taking Dianette. Inform your doctor if you suffer from any of the below:

  • You are overweight (obese)
  • You or your family have had heart or circulation problems
  • You or your family have ever had blood clotting issues
  • You have ever had a migraine or any visual disturbances
  • You have porphyria
  • You have inflammation of the pancreas
  • You have brown patches on your face or body
  • You have any illness that was made worse during pregnancy
  • You have high levels of fat in your blood
  • You have ever suffered from depression
  • You have diabetes

Taking contraceptive pills can increase your risk of breast cancer and cervical cancer. You should attend smear tests and cancer screenings regularly.

They can also cause high blood pressure, so you should have this monitored at least annually by your doctor.

Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any other medicine, or if you are already taking any other medication.

This list is not exhaustive. Always read the patient information leaflet for comprehensive reasons why Dianette may not be suitable for you to take.

Can you buy Dianette over the counter?

You cannot buy Dianette without a prescription, so it is not for sale over the counter.

Can you buy Dianette online in the UK?

Dianette is a prescription-only medicine (POM). You can buy Dianette online from Medicine Direct, but you will need to complete a confidential online questionnaire to make sure it is safe for you. Your answers will be reviewed by one of our certified prescribers.

If you order from our online pharmacy by 2pm, we can offer you next day delivery.

It is important to ensure that you are buying medicine online from a UK fully regulated pharmacy such as Medicine Direct. To learn more about our company, team, medical professionals, and the licenses we hold, visit our about us page.

Dianette alternatives

There are many different types of contraceptive pills available if Dianette is not suitable for you. However, you should always talk to your doctor before switching from one pill to another.

Other combined contraceptive pills that can also be bought from Medicine Direct include:

  • Yasmin
  • Ovranette
  • Synphase
  • Noriday
  • Logynon
  • Femodene
  • Femodette

Alternatively, some women prefer to take progestogen-only pills (POPs), such as Cerazette or Norgeston. These are often referred to as ‘mini-pills’ and can also be ordered from Medicine Direct after completing an online questionnaire.

There are also various types of contraception available that do not require you to take any pills at all. Some of the most common alternatives to the pill include:

  • The contraceptive patch
  • The contraceptive implant
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Condoms
  • The contraceptive injection

For more information on different types of contraception that may be suitable for you, we recommend visiting the Contraception Choices website.

Dianette Interactions and Dose

All of our Doctors and Pharmacists follow NICE guidelines when prescribing Dianette.

Dianette Side Effects

The more common side effects of Dianette can be found on the main page.

In rare cases, you may experience more serious side effects while taking this pill. Speak to your doctor if you experience any of the below side effects while taking Dianette:

  • Poor tolerance of contact lenses
  • Venous blood clot
  • Breast or vaginal discharge
  • Weight loss

Some women have reported severe depression while taking this pill. In some cases, this has been so severe that it has led them to suicidal thoughts. If you experience depression or thoughts of taking your life, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

This medication causes an increased risk of blood clots in your veins, or blood clots in your arteries.

Signs of blood clots include:

  • Feeling breathless
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • A sudden cough
  • Severe chest pain that may travel to your left arm
  • Any unusual or long-lasting headaches or migraines
  • Changes in vision or loss of vision
  • Slurring your speech
  • Sudden changes to your senses
  • Pain and/or swelling in your legs
  • Abdomen pain
  • Numbness or weakness in your body

A contraceptive pill like Dianette can increase your risk of getting breast cancer. Symptoms of breast cancer include:

  • Dimpling of the skin
  • Changes in your nipples
  • Any lumps you can see or feel

Signs of cancer of the cervix may include:

  • Pain during sex
  • Pain in your pelvis
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding
  • Vaginal discharge that is bloody or smells

Signs of liver problems while using this pill include:

  • Severe stomach pain
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes
  • Inflamed liver
  • Itching of your whole body

Serious Side Effects

In rare circumstances, you may suffer a severe allergic reaction to Dianette. If you experience any of the below symptoms, you should either call 999 or go to A&E straight away:

  • You are wheezing
  • You have a skin rash that is blistering, peeling, itchy, red or swollen
  • You have tightness in the chest or throat
  • You are finding it difficult to breathe or speak
  • You have swelling in your face, mouth, lips, throat or tongue

You may require immediate treatment in hospital.

The above lists may not be exhaustive effects you can experience; always read the patient information leaflet that will come in your medicine's packaging for the full details on all potential side effects.

If you have any concerns at all, please do not hesitate to speak to your doctor.

Dianette Warnings and drug interactions

Certain medications can interact with Dianette and hinder its effectiveness.

Before taking any new medication, you should always make sure you inform your doctor of all medicines you are currently using, including prescription and non-prescription medication, herbal remedies, vitamins and supplements.

If you are taking Dianette as a skin treatment, you should not take any other hormonal contraception at the same time.

Tell your doctor in particular if you are currently taking:

  • Medicines to treat epilepsy
  • Medicines to treat tuberculosis
  • Medicines to treat HIV and hepatitis C
  • Medicines to treat fungal infections
  • Medicines to treat arthritis or arthrosis
  • Medicines to treat high blood pressure in your lungs' blood vessels
  • Any herbal remedies containing St. John's Wort
  • Any medicines containing ciclosporin
  • Tizanidine
  • Theophylline

For more information on medicines that interact with Dianette.

This list may not be exhaustive; always read the patient information leaflet thoroughly before you start to take this medicine. If you have any questions or concerns about Dianette, we strongly advise you to discuss them with your doctor.

You should never order medication online unless it is from a UK registered online pharmacy, like Medicine Direct. We are registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council, meaning we guarantee nothing but genuine medication. Order online before 2pm and we can offer you next day delivery on your medicine.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

Do not take Dianette if you are pregnant, think you may be pregnant, or are trying to get pregnant.

Similarly, you should not use Dianette if you are currently breastfeeding.

Dianette Ingredients

The main active ingredients within this medicine are: Cyproterone acetate and Ethinylestradiol

For a full list of the inactive ingredients, please read the Summary of Product Characteristics

Delivery Company Delivery Service Price Details
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DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Delivery - Tracked £5.95 Order by 2pm (subject to Dr approval) Next Working Day Delivery
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DPD UK Next Day Delivery Tracked Saturday Delivery £9.95

Delivery specified for Saturday

Order Friday by 2pm (subject to Dr approval)

Please note that next day delivery to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands and British Isles cannot be guaranteed. Please contact our team for more information.

Written byHussain Abdeh MPharm: 2211840

Updated on: 25/06/2021

This content has been written by our Superintendent Pharmacist Hussain Abdeh and has been medically reviewed by our Pharmacist Sonia Khan

Hussain Abdeh Superintendent Pharmacist at Medicine Direct

Hussain Abdeh
MPharm: 2211840

Pharmacist Independent Prescriber

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