FITTED IN MINUTES, WORKS FOR YEARS
The intrauterine system (IUS) is a small, soft, T-shaped device with a reservoir containing a progestin hormone that is placed in your womb by your doctor or nurse. It slowly releases the hormone, which thins the lining of your womb and thickens cervical mucus, making it harder for sperm to get through. It's 99.8% effective, so you're about as protected against pregnancy as you can be.
A couple of consultations with your doctor or nurse is about all that's needed. Once you've discussed it, and decided that it's the right method for you, the IUS can be fitted. It works continuously for up to 3 or 5 years with no daily or weekly routine to remember, so it's a great option for everyone looking for a long-acting contraception. If and when you decide to stop using it, the contraceptive effect of the IUS wears off quickly, allowing you to return to fertility.
How it measures up
EFFICACY WITH PERFECT USE
With a prescription, the IUS is inserted by a doctor or nurse and left in place for up to 5 years. It is a highly effective and reliable method of contraception.View ’Typical’ Use Efficacy Rate
EFFICACY WITH TYPICAL USE
Since it is given with a prescription and inserted by a doctor or nurse, the possibility for error is very low and the efficacy of the hormonal coil is high. Should you have a concern about the placement of your IUS, consult your doctor or nurse immediately.View ’Perfect’ Use Efficacy Rate
Yes. A progestin hormone is released from the IUS into the womb and acts mainly locally.
Ease of Use
The IUS must be fitted by a doctor or nurse, but once it is correctly placed it is effective for up to 3 or 5 years. If you want to stop using the IUS, a doctor or nurse can remove it in minutes.
Heavier periods may become lighter and less painful, and periods may become less frequent in general. However some women experience cramps and irregular bleeding. Spotting is also common in the first 6 months of use.
Hormonal Coil placement or so-called “IUD pain” is usually well tolerated by most women. Some women experience pain and dizziness after placement, but this usually settles after a short time. Your doctor or nurse may advise you to take simple painkillers, and other ways you may be able to minimize discomfort.
The Hormonal Coil must be placed by a doctor or nurse, who will ensure it is correctly positioned. Occasionally, muscle contractions during menstruation can push it out of place or expel it, and very rarely it can perforate the wall of the uterus. If you experience any unusual bleeding, pain, or discomfort, you should consult your doctor or nurse as soon as possible.
The IUS is a small, soft and flexible device. Neither you nor your partner should feel it during sexual intercourse. If you do, intercourse should be avoided until you can seek advice with your doctor or nurse.
It can make your periods lighter, shorter or stop altogether. For this reason, it can help some women who have heavy periods. Additionally, in the first three months after insertion you may experience irregular bleeding.
For many women, the cramps go away relatively quickly. But for others, they may last longer. Cramps should gradually decrease in severity but may continue on and off for the first few weeks after placement.
Around 18 percent of women can’t feel the IUS strings. They may be higher up in your vagina or coiled around your cervix, which is generally no cause for concern. If you are worried, speak to your doctor or nurse.
You may experience some cramping, changes in your period, or moderate bleeding. If you’re concerned about any side effects after removal, contact your doctor.
An IUD is a copper coil that releases copper to stop you from getting pregnant – it does not contain hormones. By contrast, an IUS releases the hormone progestogen into your body.
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Works continuously once fitted.
The time it takes for the majority of women to become pregnant after removal.
The time after giving birth when an IUS can usually be fitted.
- Stay in place for up to three or five years, but can be removed at any time.
- Allows spontaneity and doesn’t interrupt sex.
- Can offer an alternative to women who experience negative effects from the hormone estrogen.
- Some women experience shorter, lighter, or less frequent periods.
- Can be used when breastfeeding.
- Fertility can promptly return to your normal levels once the IUS is removed.
- A doctor or nurse must perform the placement and removal.
- Some women experience irregular bleeding, cramps and spotting in the first six months.
- Some women experience headaches, tenderness, and acne after the IUS is placed, but this is less common than with the pill.
- Doesn’t protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
NEED ADVICE? SPEAK TO YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL
Seek out an appointment with your doctor or nurse for further support that meets your needs.