Product Description

Provera 10mg tablets contain medroxyprogesterone acetate, a type of hormone known as a progestogen. It is one of the most commonly used brands in the UK.

While Provera is not licensed for period delay, it is licensed in the UK to control dysfunctional vaginal bleeding and is frequently prescribed as an alternative to Norethisterone.

Norethisterone may be unsuitable for some women, particularly those who cannot use combined contraceptive pills, as it is converted into an oestrogen in the body.

Women who have had a blood clot should not use period delay medicines

The following groups of patients should not use Norethisterone but could consider using Provera.

  • Being very overweight (BMI 35 or greater)
  • Relatives who have had blood clots
  • Unable to move for long periods of time (for example after an operation, serious injury or major surgery)
  • History of repeated miscarriage
  • Traveling by air for over 6 hours
  • High altitude trekking

Taking Provera tablets a few days before your period is due to start will temporarily lift your progesterone levels delaying the start of your period.  Once you finish taking the treatment your progesterone levels will drop triggering the start of your period.  

The effectiveness of Provera and Norethisterone can vary, and may not work equally for all women.  If you have concerns please speak to our team.

Provera should only be used occasionally to delay a period.  If you find that you need to use this regularly then please speak with your GP as a hormonal contraceptive (like the pill) might be more suitable for controlling frequent or heavy uncomfortable periods.  

Please note: this medicine is not a contraceptive and may be supplied in white dispensing boxes because Provera is only available in boxes of 10 or 90 tablets.  There is no need to be concerned this is standard practice in UK pharmacies.  


You should always take this medicine as directed by your doctor or pharmacist. Period delay tablets should be taken with water. The normal dosage for these tablets is:

Delay your period - 1 tablet three times a day starting at least three days before your period is due. Your period should occur 2-3 days after you have stopped taking the medicine.

This medicine is intended for short-term occasional use to delay a period during times of inconvenience, therefore the maximum number of tablets we will prescribe is 60 tablets which would be sufficient to delay your period for up to 17 days.

For occasional use, we recommended that Provera is not taken any more frequently than 2-3 times per year with regular normal periods between use.



Each Provera 10mg tablet contains the following:

Active Ingredient: Medroxyprogesterone 10mg  

Inactive ingredients (excipients) Lactose, Sucrose, Maize starch, Liquid Paraffin, Talc, Calcium Stearate, Purified Water

Side effects

What side effects could I expect from Provera?

Rarely, Provera may cause a severe allergic reaction which can be life-threatening in some cases. You can get some or all of the following symptoms: wheezing, difficulty breathing, feeling faint, swelling of the face or tongue, hands and feet, and intense itchy skin rash. If you think you are reacting badly to the medicine, get emergency medical help immediately.

If you get any of the following symptoms, you should stop taking the tablets and see your doctor immediately.

These are symptoms of a blood clot in the lungs which may all occur together:

Sudden, severe, sharp pain in your chest
Coughing up blood
You suddenly become short of breath
Your heart beats more rapidly

These can be symptoms of a blood clot in the brain (a stroke):

You have an unusually severe or long headache
Your sight is affected in any way
You find it difficult to speak
You collapse or faint
Any part of your body feels weak or numb

These are symptoms of a deep-vein thrombosis (DVT):

You have severe pain, tenderness or swelling in your calf, ankle or foot
You have purple discolouration of the skin of the leg or the skin becomes red and warm to touch

Tell your doctor if you get any other side effects reported with Provera which may include the following:

Very common: may affect more than 1 in 10 people

  • Headache
  • Feeling sick
  • Unexpected or unusual vaginal bleeding or spotting

Common: may affect up to 1 in 10 people

  • Severe allergic reaction to the drug (e.g. wheezing, difficulty breathing)
  • Depression
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Nervousness
  • Dizziness
  • Hair loss
  • Acne
  • Nettle rash or hives
  • Itchy skin
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Breast pain
  • Breast tenderness
  • Fever
  • Tiredness
  • Weight increase

Uncommon: may affect up to 1 in 100 people

  • Facial hair growth
  • Milky discharge from the breast when not pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Oedema/fluid retention

For a complete list of all side effects please read the patient information leaflet


Who should not use Provera?

This medicine should not be used by the following groups of patients:

  • if you have ever had a problem with blood clots, including deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
  • if you have now or have had in the past, a heart attack or angina
  • if you have liver problems
  • if you are pregnant or think you might be pregnant
  •  if you have now or have ever had any vaginal bleeding (not a period) for which your doctor could not find a cause.
  • if you have severe generalised itching all over your body (pruritis)
  • if you have a condition known as porphyria (a rare inherited blood disease)

Provera is not suitable if you use any of the following medicines without first speaking with your GP or Pharmacist for medical advice:

  • Use oral or injectable contraceptives, for example, the pill and depo-injection.
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
  • Medicines to treat epilepsy (e.g. phenytoin, carbamazepine)
  • Antibiotic medicines to treat an infection (e.g.  rifampicin)
  • Antiviral medicines to treat HIV (e.g. ritonavir, nelfinavir)
  • Anticancer medicines
  • Herbal preparations containing St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum)
  • Aminoglutethimide which is sometimes used in Cushing’s Syndrome.
  • Ciclosporin (for suppressing the immune system)

If you have any questions about how this product may interact with your current medicines or conditions don't hesitate to get in touch with us and one of our pharmacists will be more than happy to help.

Patient Information Leaflet

Frequently asked Questions

Can I buy Provera over the counter?

Provera is a prescription only medicine and is not available to buy over the counter. It can however be purchased from our online pharmacy after a consultation with our prescriber.  If you would like to buy Provera from our Online Pharmacy then you will be asked some questions about your health. Our prescriber will check your consultation before dispatch to ensure it is safe and appropriate for you.

Are there any alternatives to Provera?

Norethisterone is a licenced alternative to Provera, but it is not always suitable.  If you are using a contraceptive pill where you have a 7 day break you control your period by not having a break and starting your tablet straight away.  We call this running your pills 'back to back'







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