Having A Coil Fitted Or Removed
The coil - either copper or hormonal - is one of the safest and most convenient forms of contraception, and has over a 99% success rate at preventing pregnancies. It can also be used effectively to relieve period pain, heavy bleeding and to treat the symptoms of endometriosis.
Here at the Medical Chambers our Consultant Gynaecologists are highly skilled at inserting or removing a coil. We understand that this is an intimate procedure and will make sure you feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible throughout.
How does the coil work?
A coil – also known as an IUD - is a small T-shaped device that’s gently placed in your uterus by a specialist. It works by releasing tiny amounts of copper or progesterone to prevent you getting pregnant. It’s an extremely popular form of contraception as once it’s in place you can forget about it for up to 10 years – so no more pregnancy scares or having to remember to take the pill every day.
What are the different types of coil?
Copper coil (IUD): The copper coil provides contraception for up to ten years, depending on which type you choose. It’s extremely convenient and is a great option if you would prefer a non-hormonal contraceptive, particularly if you suffer from migraines or are at risk of blood clots.
Hormonal Coil (known either as an IUD or IUS): There are several different types of hormonal coil available. We use the Mirena coil – as it is one of the safest and most effective hormonal IUDs available. It works by releasing a tiny amount of the hormone progestin, which protects against pregnancy, and can also help treat women who suffer from heavy or painful periods and endometriosis.
The Mirena coil is an excellent choice if you are concerned about the high levels of hormone in your body – unlike the contraceptive pill it doesn’t contain oestrogen and releases only a tiny dose of progesterone.
What are the benefits of the coil?
- Very low or no doses of hormone, compared to the contraceptive pill
- IUDs are the most dependable form of contraception, and pregnancies are extremely rare. They are more effective than any other type of contraception, including the contraceptive pill, condoms, or hormonal patches, rings or injections. In the case of the Mirena coil, pregnancy rates are less than 1% over five years.
- Convenience: once you have an IUD you no longer have to worry about it for between 5-10 years. You don’t have to bother with condoms or remember to take the pill every day.
- It is quickly reversible if you want to get pregnant, it simply has to be removed by your doctor.
What to expect when you have a coil fitted or removed
Our specialists will assess your medical history, spending time discussing any lifestyle and hormonal issues which may influence the kind of contraception that will be best for you.
If you do decide to have a coil fitted, you will have a detailed consultation beforehand with your specialist, to make sure you know exactly what is going to happen and give you enough time to ask any questions. We want to make sure you are as comfortable as possible, and it is important that you feel relaxed and secure throughout the procedure.
Pain shouldn’t be a normal part of having an IUD fitted or removed and we do everything possible to minimise any discomfort. Using an ultrasound scan, your specialist will examine the size and position of your uterus and ovaries. Together with your specialist you will also decide whether or not you would like some pain relief, such as a local anaesthetic or gels.
Once you need to have the coil removed, we will again use an ultrasound scan to help us gently take it out, and offer you pain relief if needed. At all times we take care to make sure you feel safe and comfortable, and have as much time as you need during the fitting or removal.
Our Clinic in London
If you would like to discuss contraception with one of our Consultant Gynaecologists, please call 020 7244 4200 or make an appointment online.