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Mirena IUD

Women who have had at least one child and are not interested in oral forms of birth control may want to use Mirena®. This IUD (intrauterine device) is inserted into a woman's uterus through a small, thin tube called a catheter. (More accurately, Mirena is a type of IUS, or intrauterine system, since it contains a progesterone hormone.) Once in place, the device works to prevent pregnancy in most women by stopping ovulation; in some women, it also causes changes in the uterus and cervix that prevent conception from occurring.
Mirena can be left in place for up to five years. Most women have no problems with it, although some discomfort may be felt when Mirena is first inserted, such as dizziness or cramps. In clinical studies, reported side effects included nausea, headaches, menstrual changes, and acne. Fortunately, if any problems do occur, they are usually mild and either don't require any treatment or are easily treated.
(For more information, click Mirena. This article explains in detail how this medication works, what to discuss with your healthcare provider before using it, and situations when this product may need to be avoided.)
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD
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