Contraceptions have gradually been accepted everywhere as a means of birth control. There are various types of contraceptives one can adopt based on preference. One of such contraception is the hormonal coil.

It is also called IntraUterine System (IUS) and is completely different from an IntraUterine Device (IUD). An IUD is another contraceptive that doesn't release hormones, instead, it releases copper that creates an environment that will not allow sperm cells to survive.

Hormonal coil (IUS) is a T-shaped plastic device that is placed in your womb. It is meant to prevent fertilisation of the egg cell by releasing a hormone known as progesterone hormone. This hormone makes it impossible for sperm to reach an egg by thickening the cervical mucus ( womb opening). The hormone also causes the lining of the womb to become thinner, thereby making it unlikely that a fertilised egg will be accepted.

For some women, the IUS stops ovulation, although some women will continue to ovulate. The IUS is the sixth most popular contraception in the UK, and it is gradually becoming more popular, especially for women above the age of 25. IUS has an effective rate of about 99%. When inserted, it can last for up to 3 -5 years.

How it works

The IUS is inserted into the womb by a physician or nurse. Note that it can be removed at any time you wish, but before that, you must refrain from sexual intercourse a week before removal of the IUS, or you use condoms during sex. When insertion is complete, there will be no need to worry about conception. You or your partner shouldn't be able to feel it during sex. In the UK, there are two brands of IUS coil available.

They are :

  • The Mirena coil which lasts for about five years
  • The Jaydess coil that lasts for about three years

Benefits of IUS hormonal coil

There are a variety of benefits associated with the use of IUS.

  • The IUS is not affected by other forms of medication
  • Sex is not prepared for or interrupted
  • It is durable for about 3 - 5 years
  • There is no need to take pills daily
  • It can relieve period pains, make heavy periods lighter, or stop them completely
  • It doesn't affect fertility when removed

Who can use an IUS?

IUS hormone coil can be used by any woman. However, your medical history and family medical records will have to be reviewed by the clinician or doctor, to determine if it is right for you or not. The IUS is mostly suitable for women who cannot take the oestrogen hormone (usually in the form of pills). You may be advised against using IUS if you have or have had some health conditions like

  • Heart disease
  • Liver disease
  • Cervical disease
  • Breast cancer
  • Untreated STI or pelvic infection
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Uterus or cervical problems

Effects and risks

Like every other medical procedure, there are risks and effects associated with them –IUS is not an exception either. The effects of the use of IUS can be short term or long term. Severe effects are really rare.

Some of the short term effects are bleeding and spotting in the first six months after insertion. This is not regular and usually stops with time. In rare cases, there are reports of headaches, breast tenderness, acne and worse, pelvic infection.

Long term effects are rare, but they include changes in libido and mood (though it can be minor), cysts filled with fluid appearing on the ovaries, and vaginal pain and bleeding. All these effects are usually not serious and do not require treatment. They mostly disappear on their own with time.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

There are bound to be questions asked by women who might be unsure of adopting the use of IUS as contraception. Here are some common questions asked by women before they decide to use an IUS hormone coil, and the answers we have provided.

Contact Info

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Email: info@gynaeuk.com


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