Can You Get Pregnant With A Progesterone Implant?

The progesterone implant is a subdermal contraceptive method with a high percentage of reliability. The procedure for placing this implant is essential for its effectiveness.

Science has moved towards increasingly safer contraceptive methods. However, 100% protection is not possible. The progesterone implant is very reliable, but its effectiveness is subject to the manner of use, as are other methods.

Between 1999 and 2000, the commercialization of this contraceptive began throughout the world. Its effectiveness is estimated at 99%. That is, only 1% of women can get pregnant. A percentage, without a doubt, very small but that, in effect, exists.

What is the progesterone implant?

Pregnancy in young women.

Also known as a “subdermal implant” because it is placed under the skin of a woman’s arm, this device slowly releases progestogen, a synthetic version of the hormone progesterone, as this study published in the journal Perinatology and Human Reproduction points out .

This contraceptive method is good for women who prefer to delay pregnancy for the long term. It guarantees a protection of 3 to 5 years, depending on the type of product. After that time, the woman can decide if the implant is removed and another is installed or if she wants to become pregnant. In this case, it is only withdrawn and, after one to three months, your normal ovulation returns.

The progesterone implant is a flexible cylinder or capsule that is inserted and removed with a simple surgical procedure. The doctor uses local anesthesia and does not require hospitalization. Its function is to prevent ovulation and thicken the cervical mucus, making it difficult for sperm to access the uterus.

 Advantages offered

  • You forget that you have to take a daily pill.
  • It does not interfere with spontaneity during sexual intercourse.
  • It favors the reduction of menstrual pain.
  • It is good for those women who cannot take pills containing estrogen.
  • It can help protect against vaginal infections, as the mucus plug produced by the implant in the cervix prevents bacteria from reaching the cervix.

Associated disadvantages

  • Bleeding may appear between one menstruation and another.
  • In some women, menstruation becomes infrequent, even stops.
  • If you have abnormal bleeding, the progesterone implant cannot be placed.

Does it have other side effects?

Progesterone implant side effects

Yes, there are other side effects. In general, these appear in the first months after placement and are similar to those produced by other hormonal contraceptive methods. Typically, they disappear after 3 to 4 months after the progesterone implant is placed. These side effects can be:

  • Headache.
  • Breast pain
  • Dizziness and nausea
  • Fluid retention.
  • Increased acne, although some women report improvements.

And this is evidenced by the study published in the journal Perinatology and human reproduction that we have already talked about previously.

In what cases is it contraindicated?

  • If you are allergic (hypersensitive) to the active ingredient or components of the implant.
  • In the case of suffering from thrombosis.
  • When there is a history of cancer of the breast or genital organs.
  • If you have suffered from jaundice (yellowing of the skin) or tumors in the liver.

When can the progesterone implant fail?

Woman at the doctor.

The fundamental thing to avoid getting pregnant is its correct placement. A well-trained gynecologist in the insertion of the progesterone implant ensures that this product does not fail in the contraceptive protection that the woman needs.

To place the implant you have to be sure that you are not pregnant. Therefore, it is usual for the implant to be placed the first time five days after the  beginning  of menstruation, which guarantees that there is no pregnancy. From that moment on, the implant is already effective. And this is evidenced by this work carried out by researchers from the Universidad Regional Autónoma de los Andes “Uniandes”.

When to go to the doctor?

  • If you can’t feel the implant.
  • When the shape of the implant appears to have changed.
  • If you notice any changes in your skin or feel pain in the area around the implant.
  • In case of getting pregnant.

What if you want to get pregnant?

The implant is simply removed. The advantage of using this contraceptive method is that, anytime you decide that you want to get pregnant,  you just have to ask your doctor to remove it.

Fertility is restored in a very short time. In just one month, at most three months, ovulatory cycles will be completely normal.

About the progesterone implant

The effectiveness of progesterone implants depends on its being placed correctly.  But, in general, we can say that the woman who uses it cannot get pregnant.

However, we always recommend that you consult with your gynecologist about the best contraceptive for you and your lifestyle. Making the best decision will allow you to fully enjoy your sexuality and conceive at the right time.

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