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Old 11-29-2011, 11:36 AM   #1
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Good Morning everyone! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! I apologize in advance if anyone has posted this question before, but is anyone currently on mirena, and if so, how has it effected your weight loss?

I just left my doctors office, and I asked her if mirena caused weight gain and/or if anyone had reported trouble gaining weight while on this IUD. She stated that it did not cause weight gain. Information I am getting offline is conflicting.

What are your thoughts?
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:56 AM   #2
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I had Mirena. It was horrible though. It wasn't until later (when my gyno 'left' the practice) that I found out that it wasn't FDA approved for women that had not had children. However, I didn't notice any unusual weight gain while I was on it. People will blame anything but their own poor habits on their weight, I would rather believe the studies than the people harping about it online. I had mine for about a year before I had it removed and switched to Implanon which has been amazing for me. I gained weight the old fashioned way, too many calories. Again though, I did have OTHER problems associated with Mirena.
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:47 PM   #3
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I haven't had any problems with it since I got it in January 2010. I lost weight with it, and it didn't contribute to any weight gain as far as I could see.
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Old 11-29-2011, 01:56 PM   #4
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I've had one for a few months (and I've never had children or been pregnant - the regulatory body for gynecologists officially recommends and allows IUDs of both types in all sexually mature women regardless of whether they've been pregnant before or not).

I haven't had any weight gain from it, and overall have been feeling leaps and bounds better than I ever did on the Pill!
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Old 11-29-2011, 05:42 PM   #5
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I had Mirena and I lost significant weight while on it. When I had gained weight, it was several years later, and towards the end of the lifespan of the IUD, so I can't blame it for the gain. I think like any type of hormone or birth control, it's possible to gain. I had no problems with it.
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:35 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone!
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Old 12-01-2011, 11:29 AM   #7
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I have a Mirena too and it doesn't have an impact on my weight at all. Also, I LOVE it. No periods!!! Stress-free birth control!

Re the not for women who haven't had children thing: the issue is the tightness of the cervix. The insertion is much more uncomfortable for those of us who've never had babies. (And I do mean OUCH!)
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Old 12-01-2011, 12:12 PM   #8
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I had Mirena for 2 months then switched it out to paraguard. Paraguard doesnt have hormones and it last twice as long, 10 years. Hormones make me moody and I hated who I've become. I didnt gain or lose weight on it or even gave it much time to see. I think side effects are different in everyone. Some may see more severe or less side effects than most.
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Old 12-01-2011, 02:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DietVet View Post
Re the not for women who haven't had children thing: the issue is the tightness of the cervix. The insertion is much more uncomfortable for those of us who've never had babies. (And I do mean OUCH!)
Not really, the FDA isn't concerned with minor things like that, it happily approves drugs with lots of unpleasant side effects for instance. (And there are lots of factors in how uncomfortable an IUD insertion can be. The main one is the experience of the doctor inserting it, and I think the next is the use of local anaesthetic, followed by the relaxation levels of the patient. A good IUD insertion is no worse than a smear test. IUDs are used successfully in lots of young nulliparous women, including teenagers, all over the world.) The reason that all IUDs are hard to get in the US and little-used there is the lawsuit culture. Back in the 70s, there was a very poorly designed IUD which was linked to some deaths. It was a completely different type of IUD to the type used today, and your chances of major problems are incredibly tiny if the IUD is inserted by a professional under sterile conditions on a woman who has consented to the procedure (sadly this is not the case for some parts of the world), but the terror of IUDs has lasted in the US decades past there being any actual reason for it. This means that in the US, it can occasionally still be tricky finding a doctor who will insert an IUD in a woman who hasn't had children/isn't married, but to be honest any doctor who is that ill-informed about IUDs isn't likely to be that experienced in inserting them and is best avoided anyway.
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Old 12-01-2011, 06:08 PM   #10
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An IUD insertion hurts far worse than a Pap smear, regardless of who's doing it. A Pap is just lightly scraping the very outer cells of the cervix, an IUD insertion goes through the external and internal os to the top of the uterus -- twice (the sound and then the actual IUD). Local anesthetic has not been proven to reduce pain associated with IUD insertion. And actually, you don't have to be sterile to insert the IUD as long as it's done under "clean" conditions (it's a slight difference -- anything going through your cervix is sterile, but the person doing the procedure doesn't have to be sterile).

Mirena is not contraindicated for women who have not had a vaginal birth, either by the FDA or the WHO (World Health Organization, which sets guidelines every provider should follow for contraception).

I tell my patients to take ibuprofen beforehand and that it WILL be painful and unpleasant. But childbirth hurts more.
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Old 12-01-2011, 08:05 PM   #11
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Luckily, despite being nulliparous I had next to no pain at all during insertion without anesthetic (I did take a normal dose of OTC painkiller beforehand though). I had a good/experienced doctor and mostly happened to just be lucky. I did have some cramping afterwards, but I was easily able to walk out of the office and drive home with no problems at all.
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:58 AM   #12
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I should mention that I've had four IUD insertions. One awful, inserted by a doctor who wasn't that good at it, in a freezing cold room, while I was shivering. The sounding was so painful that my uterus went into spasms and promptly rejected the IUD. The next two were excellent, done by a doctor who does IUD clinics several days a week, provided me with local anaesthetic (which definitely makes a difference, and I believe has been shown to do so in research), in a more comforting environment which included a nurse to hold my hand and chat to distract me, and I made sure I'd had a good meal beforehand and did breathing exercises to relax myself (anti-anxiety meds are sometimes used for this purpose). With these two, one of which was only a week after the first attempt, I could feel so little that I was wondering when they were going to get on with it when they told me they were all done. I've definitely had smear tests and other gynae exams worse than those. The last was done under general anaesthetic when I was getting a cystoscopy done, so I missed that one, but it was a slightly larger IUD than the other times and still went into my small (6cm), nulliparous uterus with no problems whatsoever.

I was not on my period for any of these insertions. It's really not necessary, it makes the cervix a tiny bit more open and softer but there shouldn't be a problem inserting an IUD at another time. I think the reason why it's popular is because you are almost definitely not pregnant if you're on your period, so it's a convenient time to do it, and the cervix is a small added bonus. In the UK, the NHS means that clinics offer appointments based primarily on when they have one free rather than the patient's menstrual cycle, and we have perfectly good pregnancy tests. (Incidentally, five years ago they decided that GPs can no longer insert IUDs as they prefer it to be done by a gynaecologist with more experience. Waiting lists suddenly increased when this had just come into effect, although I think it calmed down shortly afterwards.) I actually had to reschedule the cystoscopy/IUD insertion last year to avoid being on my period, I think because of not wanting all that blood getting in the way (perhaps so that they could see clearly whether I was bleeding from my bladder?). Anyway, there seem to be a lot of myths about IUDs which are used to discourage women from using them, and I think the insertion procedure is built up to sound more intimidating than necessary as part of this. In Europe they're successfully using IUDs which are anchored to the uterine wall, for heaven's sake.

As for the sterile conditions thing, OK, "clean" may be a more appropriate term. I meant in a proper medical environment, as opposed to some second- and third-world countries where they perform forced IUD insertions or sterilisations on women for population control, often in conditions which are far from clean and where any procedure would carry a high risk of infection. Warning to anyone who is curious to learn more about this: it gets quite gruesome and some people will find it distressing.
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