Since sex is such a huge part of a person’s life, contraception doesn’t really have a choice but to keep up. Still, there are some procedures that aren’t really that common. And according to some, that is for a very good reason. I, for one, have never heard about Essure before, but it seems like the product has some very heated up debates sparking up around it.
This more or less permanent contraceptive method has been around since 2002, and fewer than 800,000 women worldwide have taken advantage of it. This is mainly because of concerns that it might generate some complications. It’s because of these complications that Essure is to be retested by the FDA.
Permanent birth control?
The biggest appeal Essure has is that it’s a non-surgical permanent birth control procedure. Manufactured by Bayer, the device works by inserting some flexible coils into the vagina, up through the cervix, and into the fallopian tubes. It’s about 99% effective, and from there, the woman only has to wait until the effects are ready.
While it only takes 10 minutes to apply, another 45 before the patient can go home, and about two days for them to be able to resume all normal activities, it takes about three months before the procedure takes effect. This is because of the way it works.
What the Essure does is to create scar tissue up the fallopian tubes, preventing the sperm from reaching the eggs and fertilizing them. This is where most troubles with the procedure start.
Even though only 750,000 women have gotten the procedure ever since it was launched in 2002, about 4,258 went through subsequent surgical procedures, either for the device’s removal, or for other associated complications. These complications included perforation of the uterus or fallopian tubes, continuous pain, hypersensitivity, and abnormal bleeding.
About half of the 4,258 cases involved a partial or total hysterectomy (the removal of the uterus), and some anti-Essure advocates are claiming that they are just a fraction of the total women who had to undergo surgery. Things aren’t that simple, however.
New clinical study
The main issue is that if indeed only 4,258 women got complications from the procedure, that’s only a 0.5% risk; this is definitely not ok, but it’s a far smaller risk percentage than most other medical procedures.
Still, in order to make sure that women don’t get injured because of faulty procedures, and also in order to calm down all the parties involved, the FDA decided to perform another series of clinical trials to assure the Essure’s safety standars.
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