1. A small globular mass of some coherent, but soluble, substance containing a medicinal substance to be swallowed. SEE ALSO: tablet. 2. The P.; a colloquial term for oral contraceptives. [L. pilula; dim. of pila, ball]
- bread p. a placebo made of bread crumbs or other inactive substances.
- morning after p. an oral drug that, when taken by a woman within 2–3 days after intercourse, reduces the probability that she will become pregnant. SYN: emergency hormonal contraception.Usually the term refers to oral contraceptive tablets (birth control pills) taken briefly in higher-than-usual dosage. Use of oral contraceptives has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a means of “emergency contraception” after rape or unplanned and unprotected intercourse, but not as a regular means of preventing pregnancy. The Yupze regimen consists of a combination of progestogen (levonorgestrel 0.25 mg or norgestrel 0.5 mg) and estrogen (ethinyl estradiol 0.05 mg) taken at once and repeated in 12 hours. Depending on the product used, this regimen requires taking 2–4 tablets of a standard oral contraceptive. The first dose should preferably be taken within 24 hours after intercourse, and no later than 72 hours after. The method reduces the likelihood of pregnancy by about 75%. About 50% of women experience uterine bleeding within 1 week and most of the rest within 3 weeks unless conception has occurred. If taken early enough, the hormones may prevent fertilization from taking place by altering tubal function or exerting toxicity against the ovum. Probably, however, they usually act by preventing implantation of a fertilized ovum. At this hormone dosage the incidence of nausea is about 50% and of vomiting about 20%; headache, fluid retention, and breast tenderness may also occur. (Levonorgestrel administered alone has been reported to cause less nausea than combination therapy and to yield comparable or better protection against pregnancy.) This procedure is contraindicated in women for whom oral contraceptives are contraindicated, such as those with hypertension or a history of stroke or thromboembolic disease. The short course of high-dose hormones probably does not interrupt a pregnancy once implantation has occurred, and there is no evidence that fetal harm has occurred when such a pregnancy has continued to term. However, hormone use is contraindicated in known pregnancy or if the woman has had unprotected intercourse within the preceding 3–10 days.
- pep pills colloquialism for tablets containing a central nervous system stimulant, especially amphetamine.
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Pennebaker Inventory of Limbic Languidness

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pill 'pil n
1) a usu. medicinal or dietary preparation in a small rounded mass to be swallowed whole
2) often cap birth control pill usu. used with the <has been on the \pill for three years>

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1. a small ball of variable size, shape, and colour, sometimes coated with sugar, that contains one or more medicinal substances in solid form. It is taken by mouth.
2. the Pill see oral contraceptive.

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(pil) [L. pilula] tablet.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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