What would you do if you unexpectedly became pregnant?
Unplanned pregnancies occur surprisingly frequently, and it does not happen
to just teenagers. Besides denial, misconceptions contribute to this naiveté.
For instance, many women frequently believe they can’t get pregnant
if their partner uses condoms or she’s on the pill. Yet the risk
of unintended pregnancy is much higher than realized, 15 and 5% respectively.
Contrast this to <1%
pregnancy rates with
IUDs (intrauterine devices).
IUDs account for 1‑2% of contraceptives used the United States. Whereas
it is much higher in most developed countries in the world, such as 24%
in Denmark and 17% in Germany. The “hangover” of the Dalkon
shield from the 1970’s lives on. In 2001 a landmark study published
in the New England Journal of Medicine disproved the prevailing myth that
IUDs cause infection that leads to tubal infertility. Rather, this turned
out to be correlated with positive tests for the STD Chlamydia. Consequently
the FDA removed restrictions and now allows IUD use in all women, irregardless
of childbearing or monogamy status. Likewise past history of pelvic infections
or STDs was also removed.
Currently there are two IUDs in America; Paragaurd® which lasts for
10 years and
Mirena® which lasts for 5 years. In addition, Mirena® releases a small amount
of progesterone hormone that keeps the inside uterine lining thin, which
results in lighter menstrual bleeding. This non-contraceptive benefit
has been used “off‑label” to treat heavy periods, pelvic pain
from endometriosis, and to counteract unopposed estrogenic effects on
the uterus for some women using estrogen in menopause or Tamoxifen for
There are many
contraceptive options, which gives you freedom to plan when is the best time for you to have
children. Schedule a visit and let us help you decide which is the best
choice for you now.