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Re: Mirena Help
Mar 29, 2008
[QUOTE=History;3486433]Hello All, I got the Mirena in Jan. I was told the first 3mo. I could experience side effects. So far, I have constant headaches, bloating, constipation, light periods, constant cramping. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Should I be worried that something is wrong. Please help if you can.[/QUOTE]

Disclaimer: Everyone's body is different, and reacts differently to foreign objects/substances.

That said...

I've been using IUDs for birth control for nearly 30 years. Can't give a professional opinion, but I can share my experience. This might get a little long, but I hope you bear with me.

The only two choices of IUD available in the U.S. anymore are Paragard and Mirena. I used to use Progestaserts, and did VERY well with them because the hormone they contained was natural progesterone. My body didn't object to it. Light periods, level moods, no headaches, no skin-hair-weight problems. Having them replaced every year or so was a minor inconvenience. Why they were taken off the U.$. market i$ anyone'$ gue$$, but I have my theorie$.

Anyway, I've used copper IUDs now and then, which aren't bad, but I was a little put off by the heavier monthly flow. I was overjoyed when I heard about Mirena, which I got in 2002. I was given the impression that it was the same as Progestasert but longer-lasting.

Let me clarify something: Mirena is NOT the same as Progestasert. The ONLY thing good about it was the light periods. In exchange for that convenience, I had to live with PMS-like symptoms every single day - horrible moodiness, chronic headaches, fatigue, weight gain, acne (for the first time at 40!), and - horror of horrors - a mustache! I got ovarian cysts so bad I had to be hospitalized twice. Worst of all, my thyroid began to fail. I've had to take increasing doses of synthroid for the last four years.

I questioned my doctor about these symptoms numerous times and asked if they might be related to the Mirena, but she insisted there was no way. She said Mirena has only a local effect on the uterus, so it had to be something else.

I had my home, car, and work environment checked for molds and toxins. Everything checked out fine. Then last winter, after doing my own research, which included consulting with a friend who's an osteopath, I discovered a thing or two about Mirena. See, it's all in the marketing. Contrary to the half-truth most doctors will tell patients, Mirena does not contain progesterone (as in Progestasert), but levonorgestryl, a synthetic progestin, also used in Norplant, and which is well-known to cause all of those side effects.

I knew it had to be more than coincidence, because the symptoms began shortly after I got the Mirena, and the longer I kept it the worse the symptoms got. But, because my doctor insisted the Mirena couldn't possibly be the culprit, and because my periods were scant, I stuck with it. I regret it now, for a lot reasons.

I had the Mirena removed nearly four months ago, and am beginning to feel like my old self again. I've had no breakouts, no headaches, no shocking mood swings, more energy, and I can think more clearly. Almost like waking up from a five-year, nightmare-ish sleepwalk. I suspect my thyroid is permanently fried now, and I'll have to take synthroid for the rest of my life. So far I've had no bad reactions to that. But we'll see.

Sorry for going on so long. I just feel very strongly that Mirena isn' t the miracle birth control method Bayer Pharmaceuticals wants us all to believe. Echoes of Dalkon Shield come to mind...

In the interim, I've tried using Paragard again, but my periods were so heavy (housebound, changing every hour!) that I became anemic. So even that's no longer an option.

I've made the decision to just be done with the birth control thing and am having a tubal ligation in a few weeks. I can handle the surgery. It'll be an enormous relief to have to cope with no more hormones, and no more foreign objects. Just the real me.

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