The birth control implant is a rod-shaped plastic device measuring about 1.5 inches in length. The most common brand name in the U.S. is Nexplanon.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The rod is implanted subdermally through a minimally invasive surgery in which your doctor numbs your arm in the area of insertion and places the rod into your upper arm. The device puts a steady, low dose of Etonogestrel (a progestin), through the bloodstream.
The progestin in Nexplanon thickens the cervical mucus and weakens sperm mobility, thins the uterus lining making it harder for eggs to attach there, and suppresses ovulation.
HOW EFFECTIVE IS IT?
Nexplanon has a 99% effectiveness for contraception and can prevent pregnancy for up to 3 years.
Before your 3 year mark, make sure to schedule an appointment with your doctor for removal, or for the removal and insertion of a new implant.
BENEFITS + SIDE EFFECTS + RISKS
|Potential Benefits||Low maintenance, reversible, reduces cramps, treats menorraghia|
|Common Side Effects||Change in bleeding pattern, may have a longer/shorter/no bleeding during period, spotting, headache, stomach pain, breast pain, nausea, weight gain , bloating, vomiting, diarrhea, acne, vaginal infections, cramps, depression, anxiety, mood swings|
|Serious Risks||Serious blood clots, heart attack, stroke, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, rare cancerous or noncancerous liver tumors, ectopic pregnancy, ovarian cysts may develop but usually go away, sometimes surgery is needed to remove them|
YOU SHOULD NOT USE THE IMPLANT IF you smoke, are pregnant or think you may be pregnant, have or have had blood clots, have liver disease or tumors, have unexplained vaginal bleeding, have breast cancer or cancer that is sensitive to progestin, or may be allergic to its components. Tell your healthcare provider if you have diabetes, history of depression, high cholesterol or trigylcerides, high blood pressure, headaches, gallbladder or kidney problems. Talk to your doctor if you are allergic to anesthetics or antiseptics.
Always consult with your doctor for your personal health. Don’t hesitate to voice your concerns with them. They are there to provide you more information and recommendations about the most suitable options for your body and overall wellness.