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Implanon Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Implanon (etonogestrel) is a contraceptive used to prevent pregnancy. Common side effects of Implanon include nausea, stomach cramping/bloating/pain, dizziness, headache, mood changes, depression, breast tenderness or pain, acne, hair loss, weight gain, problems with contact lenses, sore throat, flu symptoms, back pain, nervousness, menstrual cramps, changes in menstrual periods, and vaginal irritation or discharge. Pain, bruising, numbness, infection, tingling, minor bleeding, and scarring may occur at the site where the rod is placed.
The medicine in Implanon is contained in a small plastic rod that is implanted into the skin of your upper arm. The medicine dose is released slowly into the body. The rod can remain in place and provide continuous contraception for up to 3 years. Implanon may interact with phenylbutazone, modafinil, St. John's wort, antibiotics, seizure medicines, barbiturates, and HIV medicines. Tell your doctor all medications you are taking. Implanon should not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. A certain serious pregnancy problem (ectopic pregnancy) may be more likely if you become pregnant while using this product. Implanon passes into breast milk in small amounts. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Our Implanon Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Implanon in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
- warmth, redness, swelling, or oozing where the implant was inserted;
- sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
- severe pain or cramping in your pelvic area (may be only on one side);
- sudden severe headache, confusion, pain behind the eyes, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
- sudden cough, wheezing, rapid breathing, coughing up blood;
- pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in one or both legs;
- chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
- a breast lump;
- swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet;
- jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
- symptoms of depression (sleep problems, weakness, tired feeling, mood changes); or
- dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats, seizure).
Less serious side effects may include:
- pain, numbness, or tingling where the implant was inserted;
- minor bleeding or scarring where the implant was inserted;
- menstrual cramps, changes in your menstrual periods;
- mild headache, dizziness, mood changes;
- vaginal itching or discharge;
- breast pain;
- problems with contact lenses;
- nausea, mild stomach pain;
- back pain;
- feeling nervous or depressed;
- sore throat, flu symptoms; or
- weight gain.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Implanon (Etonogestrel Implant)
What is Patient Information Overview?
A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.
Implanon Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects
Your periods may be early or late, shorter or longer, heavier or lighter than normal. You may also have some spotting between periods, especially during the first several months of use. If bleeding is prolonged (more than 8 days) or unusually heavy, contact your doctor. If you miss 2 periods in a row, contact your doctor for a pregnancy test.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
The rod must be removed after 3 years. This is usually a simple procedure done in your doctor's office. Rarely (for example, if the rod has been placed too deeply or can't be felt), the rod may require surgery to remove.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: mental/mood changes (such as new/worsening depression), lump in the breast, unwanted facial/body hair, severe stomach/abdominal/pelvic pain, unusual tiredness, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin.
This medication may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) problems from blood clots (such as deep vein thrombosis, heart attack, pulmonary embolism, stroke). Get medical help right away if you have: shortness of breath/rapid breathing, chest/jaw/left arm pain, unusual sweating, confusion, sudden dizziness/fainting, pain/swelling/warmth in the groin/calf, sudden/severe headaches, trouble speaking, weakness on one side of body, sudden vision changes.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the entire patient information overview for Implanon (Etonogestrel Implant)
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Implanon FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
The following adverse reactions reported with the use of hormonal contraception are discussed elsewhere in the labeling:
- Changes in Menstrual Bleeding Patterns [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
- Ectopic Pregnancies [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
- Thrombotic and Other Vascular Events [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
- Liver Disease [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
Clinical Trials Experience
Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in practice.
In clinical trials including 942 women who were evaluated for safety, change in menstrual bleeding patterns (irregular menses) was the most common adverse reaction causing discontinuation of use of IMPLANON (11.1% of women).
Adverse reactions that resulted in a rate of discontinuation of ≥ 1% are shown in Table 3.
Table 3: Adverse Reactions Leading to Discontinuation
of Treatment in 1% or More of Subjects in Clinical Trials of IMPLANON
|Adverse Reactions||All Studies
N = 942
|* Includes “frequent”, “heavy”, “prolonged”, “spotting”,
and other patterns of bleeding irregularity.
† Among US subjects (N=330), 6.1% experienced emotional lability that led to discontinuation.
‡ Among US subjects (N=330), 2.4% experienced depression that led to discontinuation.
Other adverse reactions that were reported by at least 5% of subjects in clinical trials of IMPLANON are listed in Table 4.
Table 4: Common Adverse Reactions Reported by
≥ 5% of Subjects in Clinical Trials with IMPLANON
|Adverse Reaction||All Studies
|Insertion site pain||5.2%|
Implant site complications were reported by 3.6% of subjects during any of the assessments in clinical trials. Pain was the most frequent implant site complication, reported during and/or after insertion, occurring in 2.9% of subjects. Additionally, hematoma, redness, and swelling were reported by 0.1%, 0.3%, and 0.3% of patients, respectively [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].
The following additional adverse reactions have been identified during post-approval use of IMPLANON. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.
Gastrointestinal disorders: constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, vomiting.
General disorders and administration site conditions: edema, fatigue, implant site reaction, pyrexia.
Immune system disorders: anaphylactic reactions
Investigations: clinically relevant rise in blood pressure, weight decreased.
Metabolism and nutrition disorders: increased appetite.
Pregnancy, puerperium and perinatal conditions: ectopic pregnancy.
Psychiatric disorders: anxiety, insomnia, libido decreased.
Renal and urinary disorders: dysuria.
Vascular disorders: hot flush.
Complications related to insertion or removal of the implant reported include: bruising, slight local irritation, pain or itching, fibrosis at the implant site, paresthesia or paresthesia-like events, scarring and abscess.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Implanon (Etonogestrel Implant)
Additional Implanon Information
Implanon - User Reviews
Implanon User Reviews
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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