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The Most Common IUD Injuries And Their Side Effects

The Most Common IUD Injuries and Their Side Effects

Intrauterine devices (IUDs) are common forms of birth control that prevent pregnancy for multiple years. Although they are convenient for many women, an IUD comes with the risk of unexpected and dangerous side effects and complications.

Possible Complications of IUDs

Side effects are normal when using any medical device. However, IUDs can cause serious injuries and medical issues, such as:

  • Infection – A severe complication of a defective IUD is infection. Typically, infections are introduced during insertion. Bacteria can enter a woman’s body from unwashed hands or contaminated tools. Although treatment is possible, the infection can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). Untreated PID can cause infertility.
  • Unexpected pregnancy and ectopic pregnancy – The risk of getting pregnant is low. However, pregnancy can occur, especially if the device migrates after insertion. Ectopic pregnancy involves the egg implanting somewhere outside the uterus. It can endanger the woman’s health. Common symptoms of ectopic pregnancy include sharp pelvic or abdominal pain, dizziness, vaginal bleeding, lower back pain, and bowel or bladder issues.
  • Ovarian cysts – IUD use can increase the risk of ovarian cysts. Most cysts don’t cause pain and go away without medical intervention. However, some can be extremely painful and require surgical removal.
  • Expulsion – Expulsion occurs when an IUD moves from the original position after insertion. Partial expulsion involves the IUD moving from the top of the uterus. It can cause symptoms such as feeling the strings in a lower position than they should be and cramping. Complete expulsion occurs when the IUD gets pushed from the uterus into the vagina.
  • Embedment – The effectiveness of the IUD decreases when it embeds into the uterine wall. It requires immediate removal by a doctor. Sometimes, surgical removal is necessary. Leaving an IUD where it has become embedded can lead to pregnancy.
  •  Perforation – Sometimes, the IUD can push through or into the muscle of the uterus. It might occur during insertion but can also happen after. Not addressing perforation lowers the effectiveness of the device. Removing the IUD is a complicated process that can lead to additional injuries.
  • Migration – An IUD can migrate from the intended insertion site. It might move to a nearby organ if it perforates the uterine wall, or it could travel somewhere else in the pelvic area.

Management of IUD complications

Not all IUD complications can be prevented. But when OBGYNs learn of concerning symptoms, such as fever, lost-lasting or heavy bleeding, severe pain, painful sex, unusual vaginal discharge, or that the IUD’s string feels out of place, the standard of care frequently requires an investigation. A reasonable investigation includes a physical examination, ultrasound, and lab work. Such care may assist in determining whether an IUD is the cause of the patient’s symptoms. If OBGYNs do not appropriately work-up their patients’ symptoms or do not timely identify signs consistent with an IUD complication, they may be found liable in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Get Help in the Fight for Justice

If you want to determine whether you or your loved one was provided with reasonable care related to an IUD, hire an experienced attorney immediately. Strickland, Diviney & Segura has helped injured clients navigate complex personal injury cases in Roanoke for decades, including IUD complications. It is our privilege to guide our clients through their cases.

Call us at (540) 982-7787 for an in-person or telephonic consultation to discuss the management of your IUD.

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