The first oral contraceptive pill that effectively prevents heavy menstrual bleeding is now available in Australia.
Heavy menstrual bleeding affects more than 30 percent of woman and a drug that works as a contraceptive, as well as a treatment for prolonged menstrual bleeding, has not previously been available.
The new drug, Qlaira, contains oestradiol, a sex hormone, which naturally occurs in the female body.
Family Planning NSW's director of research, Dr Edith Weisberg, welcomed the new drug, saying it will help women who suffer from prolonged menstrual bleeding by giving them a better quality of life.
She said Qlaira is the first drug to provide "effective treatment for heavy menstrual bleeding whilst also providing effective contraception".
"Qlaira is the first oral contraceptive pill to receive this indication and will provide general practitioners with another option for the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding."
Although there are a number of treatments available, Qlaira is approved for the treatment of heavy and/or prolonged menstrual bleeding in women without known causes for their increased bleeding.
Before using any oral contraceptive, women should discuss the risks and benefits with their doctor. Qlaira is not listed on the PBS. For more information, women should visit their general practitioner.