IUD (cont.)

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What are the advantages of an IUD?

The advantages of the IUD include the fact that it is highly effective in preventing conception, is reversible, and starts working almost immediately. A woman with an IUD does not need to use other birth control methods before she has sexual intercourse, and once the IUD is removed, there is a quick return to fertility. The levonorgestrel-releasing IUD (99% effectiveness) is replaced every three to five years. The copper IUD is also 99% effective and only needs to be replaced every 10 years.

What are the types of IUDs (Paragard, Mirena, Skyla)?

Intrauterine devices (IUDs) that are available in the US come in two different types: 1) copper-releasing, or 2) progesterone-releasing.

  1. The TCu380A (Paragard) is a copper-containing IUD. It releases copper from a copper wire that is wrapped around the base. The released copper contributes to an inflammatory reaction in the uterus that helps prevent fertilization of the egg. It is approved to remain in place for up to 10 years.
  2. Levonorgestrel-releasing IUD (Mirena or Skyla): This form of IUD releases a progestin hormone from the vertical part of the T. Progestin acts to thicken cervical mucus, creating a barrier to sperm, as well as renders the lining of the uterus inhospitable to implantation of a pregnancy. The two brand named IUDs in this category contain different amounts of the hormone. Mirena is approved for up to five years of use, and Skyla for up to three years.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/26/2015

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