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Intrauterine Contraception


  • It is recommended to wait at least 12 months between pregnancies to reduce the risk of preterm birth, low birthweight and still birth
  • Pregnancy is possible 21 days after the birth of a baby and many unplanned pregnancies occur soon after childbirth
  • Suitable contraception is advised to be established by this point
  • There are 2 types of coils available.
  • They are small T shaped structures that sit within the womb
  • They are both >99% effective at preventing a pregnancy
  • Both can be inserted straight after a vaginal delivery or during a caesarean section unless
  • there are any signs of infection
  • your waters have been broken for more than 24 hours
  • They are both safe to use whilst breast feeding
  • Not effected by other medication


  • Releases the hormone progesterone and lasts 5 years
  • It works by thinning the lining of the womb, thickening of the cervical mucus and in some preventing ovulation
  • Periods usually become lighter and in some may stop altogether
  • May cause irregular bleeding
  • Is not suitable if you have
    • History of breast cancer
    • Serious liver disease
    • Heart disease
    • History of stroke
  • Side effects include acne, headache or breast tenderness in the first few months
  • When removed fertility returns quickly

Copper coil

  • Releases copper into the womb and can last between 5-10 years
  • The copper prevents a fertilized egg implanting itself and it also thickens the cervical mucus
  • Periods may become heavier, longer or more painful but may improve with time
  • When removed fertility returns quickly

After Care

  • You will be seen 4-6 weeks following insertion of the coil.
  • If the coil strings are seen nothing further will be required until removal of coil is needed
  • If coil strings are not seen, an ultrasound scan will be arranged
  • In some circumstances an Xray may also be needed
  • You will need to use additional contraception until the coil has been located