A new study shows the shocking unknowns about long-acting birth control products called intrauterine devices (IUD’s), like Mirena, even amongst the doctors who are prescribing these drugs. Claire Brindis, a director of the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health at the University of California, San Francisco, and her colleagues reviewed information from 273 health practitioners (including doctors, nurses, doctor’s assistants and certified nurse midwives).
Brindis and her team specifically took a look at surveys from 2010 and 2012 when family planning agencies had pushed to increase education about IUD’s among health care providers in Iowa and Colorado, where the survey occurred. This study was presented at the American Public Health Association meeting in San Francisco. It was conducted in collaboration with Ashley Philliber and colleagues at Philliber Research Associates, an independent research and evaluation firm in Accord, N.Y.
Only half of the providers interviewed in the study said they considered IUD drugs like Mirena safe and reliable for preventing pregnancy in women who just had babies. In addition, 30 percent of respondents said these IUD’s were not safe for women who recently had abortions. Both of these views conflict with new recommendations from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, which said last year that almost all women, including those who have recently had a baby or abortion, can safely receive IUD’s.
Moreover, the study showed that health care providers at family planning clinics are likely more informed about IUD use than the average doctor. Therefore, the misconceptions among doctors in general could be even more widespread, said Brindis.
This study shows doctors prescribing IUD’s like Mirena don’t know the facts about who can safely use these types of birth control. Does this mean that doctors also don’t know the possible severe and traumatic side effects associated with Mirena? Does this mean that women areunknowingly using this long-term birth control device that could spontaneously migrate or expel from the body, cause pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or even infertility? Or are flashy marketing campaigns and slogans by Bayer Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Mirena, leading to the influence of doctors?
No matter what the cause of the misinformation, women need to be aware of possible side effects when using Mirena. These serious side effects may include:
• Uterine perforations
• Ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy in which the fetus grows outside the uterus)
• Intrauterine pregnancy (a pregnancy with Mirena in place)
• Group A streptococcal sepsis
• Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
• Embedment of the device in the uterine wall
• Perforation of the uterine wall or cervix
• Infertility, abscesses, erosion of adjacent areas such as the vagina
Women suffering from these side effects have already spurred several lawsuits against the makers of Mirena. The pending lawsuits allege women who used Mirena suffered serious and permanent physical injuries, including sexual issues. The plaintiffs also claim that Bayer misrepresented the drug in its marketing campaign and never failed to divulge the harmful side effects.
The lawyers at Nolan Law Group are currently evaluating Mirena IUD cases. If you or someone you know has suffered an injury after using Mirena, please Contact Us or call 312-630-4000.