Are There Any Downsides of Intrauterine Device or IUCD? Know From Gynaecologist

Updated at: Sep 15, 2020
Are There Any Downsides of Intrauterine Device or IUCD? Know From Gynaecologist

While IUCD is a great contraception method, there are certain risks or side-effects associated with IUCD. Read them all in this article.

Chanchal Sengar
Women's HealthWritten by: Chanchal SengarPublished at: Sep 15, 2020

IUCD is an intrauterine contraceptive device used for birth control or spacing. IUCD is of two types- hormonal IUCD or MIRENA are hormone-releasing IUCD and also used to treat adenomyosis or heavy bleeding. The second is non-hormonal IUCD like Copper T, Paraguard and Multiload. They come in various options like ML-250 or ML 375 used for 3 and 5 years respectively. Currently, 10 years IUCD is also available. Though IUCD is a hassle-free and excellent method of temporary contraception, they also have their own downsides. Let’s know from Dr. Anjana Singh, Director, Gynecologist and Obstetrics, Fortis Hospital Noida, the possible side-effects of IUCD.

Side Effects of Hormonal IUCD or MIRENA

Common side-effects of hormonal IUCD are:

  • Bleeding and spotting between periods
  • Abdominal or pelvic pain
  • Depression
  • Low backache
  • Breast tenderness
  • Ovarian cysts (nearly 12% of female experience this)
  • Initial heavy bleeding
  • No menstruations for 1-2 year

Generally, these side-effects subside within few months of insertion but in rare cases, they may suffer serious repercussions like:

Lost Thread or Missing IUCD: The thread of IUCD may get pulled up into the cervical canal or uterine cavity and may not be felt in the vagina, making it difficult to remove.

Migration: The IUCD may perforate the uterus and may lie in the abdominal cavity or near the spine may require surgery to treat.

Infections: If personal hygiene protocols are compromised then recurrent infections in the vagina are common with IUCDs. Generally, the infection is mild and may stay only in the vagina but it may become serious and ascend up to the uterus and tubes causing tubal blockages.

Expulsion: It occurs in 2-3% females with IUCD, it may be a complete expulsion.

STD: An IUCD user may not use condoms during intercourse so she is more liable to have sexually transmitted diseases.

Also Read: 5 Intimate Hygiene Mistakes That You Might Be Committing

Side effects of Non-Hormonal IUCD

  • Abdominal cramps and back pain for a few days after insertion.
  • Heavy periods may happen in 15-20% women.
  • Inter-menstrual spotting is also common.
  • Cervical erosions due to repetitive infection can occur with ICUD

With a heavy menstruation into the vagina or a partial expulsion when a part of the copper T rod migrates below the cervical canal. The females may get cramps and abdominal pain.

Perforation: This occurs in 1-2 per 1000 IUCD insertions. This generally occurs during insertion only but may also occur later on, through the uterine cavity.

Ectopic Pregnancy: 2% chances in IUCD users be the pelvic inflammatory diseases or PID caused by IUCD can cause a tubal blockage leading to ectopic pregnancy.

Also Read: What Is The Best Contraceptive Method To Prevent Unwanted Pregnancy?

Anaemia: This may happen due to heavy menstrual flow that happens due to IUCD in 15% of users.

If a patient becoming pregnant with an IUCD, septic abortion with septicemia, septic shock and very rarely death can also occur.

It is very important to convey to the patient, regarding pseudotumor leading to intracranial hypertension and blindness can occur with Mirena insertion due to the effect of progesterone LNG.

Though above are the downsides of using IUCD but still IUCD is a very good method for interval contraception. You should be aware of the pros and cons of a safe experience.

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