NuvaRing for Birth Control

NuvaRing® (etonogestrel/ethinyl estradiol vaginal ring) is a product designed to prevent pregnancy. It works like combined oral contraceptives (birth control pills that contain two different hormones) but comes in the form of a flexible ring that is inserted into the vagina once a month.
NuvaRing works in several ways. It primarily prevents pregnancy by stopping ovulation (the maturation and release of eggs from the ovaries). However, it also works in two other, minor ways.
NuvaRing alters the cervical mucus (the fluid of the cervix, which is the lower, narrow part of the uterus that is connected to the vagina), making it more difficult for sperm to enter the uterus. It also alters the lining of the uterus (called the endometrium), making it less receptive to an embryo.
As with any medication, it is possible to develop side effects while using NuvaRing. Although most women tolerate this form of birth control well, potential NuvaRing side effects include vaginal infections or irritation, headaches, nausea, and weight gain.
(Click NuvaRing for more information, including instructions on how to use the vaginal ring, more details on what side effects may occur, and warnings on what you should discuss with your healthcare provider before using this contraceptive.)
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD