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Birth Control:My Body,My Choice

Initially this post wasn't going to happen. I felt embarrassed and ashamed. I believe in the health Trinity: mind,body and spirit. I believe every women has the right to chose what is best for her body. So how could I chose something that was not best for my body. Five years ago I brought the "Chosen" one into the world. Yes, we named our daughter Chosen(That's for another blog post though.) At my 6 week check up my doctor suggested birth control options because I wasn't ready to have a tubal ligation but I'd decided that another pregnancy wasn't a good idea for my family. We were starting a new business, we already had a then 7 year old son, Kalib. From the options my doctor suggested I chose the Mirena IUD. It was convenient and safer then some of the other birth control methods so I thought. The first 4 years of the IUD were fine. I didn't seem to have any side effects. The 5th year has arrived and I feel significant changes in my body such has..

1. Mood swings

2. Low libido

3. Depression

4. Lower back pain

5. Pelvic pain and discomfort

6. Shooting pains up my legs

7. Chest pains

I recently had my annual OBGYN appointment. As I lay on my back, looking at the ceiling ,my doctor did the examination. All was going well until I caught a glimpse of her pulling the exam light closer. She was searching my vagina like she was looking for gold. What she said next I just couldn't believe. "I can't see or feel the IUD strings" I proped myself up on my elbows and we caught

eyes. I respond "excuse me?" My doctor begins to give potential scenarios.

  • The IUD has fallen out

  • The IUD has migrated to another part of my uterus.

None of these scenarios put me at ease.

I was sent down to get an X-ray. After a week or so I received my results from the X-ray.

The X-ray did in fact reveal that "the IUD is in my pelvis with an unusual orientation. Along with the IUD news, I was also informed that I have sacroiliac arthristis(pelvic arthritis)

Today was a very hard day for me! I have always tried to take care of myself and make health related choices with my highest good in mind. Not this time. I trusted a doctor & device more than I trusted my own instincts. Now I'm not against modern medicine or birth control.

I do feel that selective information is giving regarding consequences of taking medicines or medical practices & we as patients are left to fill in the blanks. In the case of me choosing the Mirena IUD I didn't fill in the blanks. As I continue the process of getting the IUD removed, I will visit a specialist who has seen many cases such as this. From what I have been told and researched the doctor maybe able to use special tools and vaginally remove the IUD but if not I will have to have an outpatient surgery to get the IUD removed. I am hoping for the first choice but at this point I'm just ready to get my body back! So as I move forward, will I use any form of birth control again? My answer is hell no!!! My lesson learned is my body has to be most important to me and I will from this point on make sure of that.

Through this process I have found information that I wanted to share with you. Below are statements and links to read for yourself.

1. The muscles of the pelvis – specifically the gluteus muscles, (maximus, medius, and minimus), the piriformis, and some of the adductors – are related to the health and function of the uterus, (as well as the ovaries). Therefore, anything which negatively affects the uterus will have a similar effect on those muscles. Essentially, an IUD causes a general inhibition (fatigue/weakness) in these muscles, which can result in back pain, hip pain, abdominal/core weakness, or essentially any weakness associated with pelvic instability. Since the pelvis is so vital in supporting the spine and everything below (legs/feet), then any instability in the pelvis can cause problems elsewhere too. Yes, I’m saying that an IUD can cause knee, foot, ankle, and even neck problems. It’s a lot more common than you may think.

2. If you have a pelvic infection, get infections easily, or have certain cancers, don't use Mirena. Less than 1% of users get a serious pelvic infection called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).

If you have persistent pelvic or stomach pain or if Mirena comes out, tell your healthcare provider (HCP). If Mirena comes out, use back-up birth control. Mirena may attach to or go through the uterus and cause other problems. Pregnancy while using Mirena is uncommon but can be life threatening and may result in loss of pregnancy or fertility. Ovarian cysts may occur but usually disappear. Bleeding and spotting may increase in the first 3 to 6 months and remain irregular. Periods over time usually become shorter, lighter, or may stop.

This is the info that surprised me the most. No US clinical trial? What about the women of color?

3.Mirena has been studied for safety and efficacy in two large clinical trials in Finland and Sweden. In study sites having verifiable data and informed consent, 1169 women 18 to 35 years of age at enrollment used Mirena for up to 5 years, for a total of 45,000 women-months of exposure.

I will post a video update after my next doctors appointment. Positive vibes are greatly appreciated!

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