Mirena Coil is a T-shaped intrauterine delivery system (IUS) which after insertion releases the hormone levonorgestrel into the womb. The purpose of the T-body is to adjust the system to the shape of the womb. The vertical arm of the T-body carries a drug reservoir containing levonorgestrel. Two removal threads are tied to the loop at the lower end of the vertical arm.
Mirena Coil is fitted for contraception or heavy menstrual bleeding: Mirena should be inserted either during your period or within seven days from the beginning of your period. If you already have Mirena and it is time to replace it with a new one, you do not need to wait until your period.
If you have just had a baby, you should wait at least 6 weeks before having Mirena fitted Mirena can sometimes be fitted immediately after you have had an abortion, provided that you have no genital infections.
How quickly does Mirena work?
Contraception: You are protected from pregnancy as soon as Mirena is fitted. The possibility of becoming pregnant is approximately 2 in 1,000 in the first year. The failure rate may increase in case of the Mirena coming out by itself or perforation.
Heavy menstrual bleeding: Mirena usually results in lighter periods after 3 to 6 months of treatment.
What happens if Mirena comes out by itself?
If it comes out either completely or partially you may not be protected against pregnancy. It is rare but possible for this to happen without you noticing during your menstrual period. An unusual increase in the amount of bleeding during your period might be a sign that this has happened. Tell your doctor or nurse if there are any unexpected changes in your bleeding pattern.
How will Mirena affect my periods?
Mirena will affect your menstrual cycle. For all uses of Mirena: You may have lighter periods or painful periods or some spotting (light bleeding in between periods) and irregular bleeding during the first few months after Mirena is fitted. You may have prolonged or heavy bleeding or an increase in the frequency of bleeding, usually in the first 2 to 3 months, before a reduction in blood loss is achieved. Overall you are likely to have fewer days bleeding in each month and you might eventually have no periods at all. This is due to the effect of the hormone (levonorgestrel) on the lining of the womb. If you have had Mirena fitted for heavy menstrual bleeding: You should have lighter periods after 3 to 6 months. If you do not have lighter periods after 3 to 6 months, alternative treatments should be considered.
Possible side effects:
Taking any medicine carries some risk of side effects. With Mirena these are most common during the first months after it is fitted and decrease as time goes on.
Weight gain, depression, nervousness, headache, migraine, abdominal, pelvic or back pain, nausea, acne, increased growth of hair on the face and body, reduced sex drive, increased vaginal discharge, inflammation of the vulva and vagina, tender / painful breasts, Mirena coming out by itself,
Uncommon side effects:
Genital infections that may cause: vaginal itching; pain on passing urine; or lower abdominal pain from inflammation of the womb, ovaries or Fallopian tubes, swelling of your abdomen, legs or ankles, hair loss, itchy skin including eczema, skin discolouration / increased skin pigment especially on the face (chloasma).
Rare side effects:
If you experience any of the following serious side effects please contact your doctor or nurse immediately:
- Severe pain or fever developing shortly after insertion may mean that you have;
- severe infection which must be treated immediately. In rare cases very severe infection (sepsis) can occur.
- Severe pain and continued bleeding as this might be a sign of damage or tear in the wall of the womb (perforation). Perforation is rare (1:1000 chance), but occurs most often during the fitting of the Mirena, although the perforation may not be detected until sometime later. If this happens the Mirena will be removed; very rarely this may require surgery. Possible signs and symptoms of perforation may include:
- severe pain (like menstrual cramps) or more pain than expected – heavy bleeding (after insertion)
- pain or bleeding which continues for more than a few weeks
- sudden changes in your periods
- pain during sex
- Lower abdominal pain especially if you also have a fever or have missed a period or have unexpected bleeding, as this might be a sign of ectopic pregnancy.
- The absolute risk of ectopic pregnancy in Mirena users is low. However, when a woman becomes pregnant with Mirena in place, the relative likelihood of ectopic pregnancy is increased.
- Lower abdominal pain or experience painful or difficult sex as this might be a sign of ovarian cysts or pelvic inflammatory disease. This is important as pelvic infections can reduce your chances of having a baby and can increase the risk of ectopic pregnancy.