Intrauterine Device Removal
Pronounced: in-trah-U-tah-rin dee-vice ree-MOO-vahlEn Español (Spanish Version)
An intrauterine device (IUD) is a type of temporary birth control for women. The device is usually used to prevent pregnancy. The hormone-releasing device may be used for other reasons. It is inserted into the uterus though the vagina by a doctor. The uterus carries the fetus during pregnancy.
A woman with an IUD may decide to have it removed. IUD removal is done by a doctor. You should never remove an IUD yourself.
There are two types of IUDs:
- Hormone-releasing—Releases the hormone progestin. Can be left in the body for 5 years before it needs to be replaced.
- Copper—Releases copper ions. Can be left inside the body for 10 years.
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Reasons to remove an IUD may include:
- It has expired or needs to be replaced
- You get a sexually transmitted infection
- Side effects, such as abnormal bleeding or pain
- Heavy and/or prolonged menstrual bleeding
- IUD fails and you become pregnant
- You want to use a different birth control method
- You want to become pregnant
- Your menstrual periods have ended due to menopause
- You need treatment that requires the IUD to be removed
Last reviewedJanuary 2015by Andrea Chisholm, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.