Long Acting Reversible Contraception – LARC

LARCs include IUDs with or without progestin (a hormone) and implants (like Nexplanon).

There is one non hormonal IUD available (the Paragard) and 3 progestin (a hormone) IUDs (Mirena, Skyla and Liletta).  Nexplanon, an implant, is also made with progestin only.

The three progestin IUDs have the following risk information from RxList.com.

Mirena Side Effects (from http://www.rxlist.com/mirena-drug/side-effects-interactions.htm)

Skyla Side Effects (from http://www.rxlist.com/skyla-drug/side-effects-interactions.htm)

Liletta Side Effects (from http://www.rxlist.com/liletta-drug/side-effects-interactions.htm)

The following serious or otherwise important adverse reactions are discussed in elsewhere in the labeling: (If you follow the link, click on Warnings or Precautions tab.)

Paragard side effects & health risks include the following items from http://www.contracept.org/iud-paragard.php

Side Effects & Health Risks of Paragard

When ParaGard is put in place, cramping or pain may be experienced, and some women feel faint or dizzy. The most common side effect of ParaGard is longer and heavier periods, and some women have spotting between periods. Usually, these problems go away after a few months. However, if menstruation is very heavy or does not stop when it should, call your doctor. The IUD contains barium sulfate, so that it is easier to see on an x-ray. Although many forms of baruim are radioactive, the barium sulfate in the IUD is considered safe.

Some serious health risks that are connected to intrauterine device use, including ParaGard, are pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), perforation of the uterus, expulsion of the device (the IUD falls out), and difficult removal (the IUD gets stuck in the uterus and may require surgery to remove). If you miss a period, you should also call your doctor immediately because this means that you might be pregnant. Pregnancy can pose a serious health risk for any women with an IUD in place.

A comprehensive list of possible side effects and health risks of the ParaGard IUD are listed below.

Documented Health Risks for the ParaGard IUD
  • Abdominal infection or adhesions (scar tissue)
  • Allergy to copper
  • Anemia
  • Backache
  • Blood poisoning
  • Bowel obstruction
  • Cervical infection or erosion
  • Cysts on ovaries and tubes
  • Death
  • Delayed menstruation
  • Difficult removal
  • Ectopic/tubal pregnancy
  • Embedment (IUD surrounded by uterine tissue)
  • Expulsion (IUD comes completely or partially out of the uterus)
  • Fainting and pain at the time of insertion or removal
  • Fragmentation (breakage) of the IUD
  • Infertility
  • Spotting between periods
  • Miscarriage
  • Painful intercourse
  • Pelvic infection (PID), which may result in surgical removal of your reproductive organs, including hysterectomy
  • Perforation of the uterus (womb) or cervix (IUD passes through uterine tissue)
  • Pregnancy
  • Prolonged or heavy menstrual flow
  • Infected miscarriage followed, in some cases, by blood poisoning, which can lead to death
  • Vaginal discharge
Source: List taken from ParaGard T 380A manufacturer’s patient package insert.

IUD news story from 2013 (the statistics given will have changed).

Thousands of women complain about dangerous complications from Mirena IUD birth control (click on link below)


A positive review of the Copper IUD:

Another IUD story:

Read more about the IUD

Read more about the Implant

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