"May 23, 2012 -- Women using birth control pills may have a 20 times greater risk of an unplanned pregnancy than women using longer-acting forms of birth control like an intrauterine device (IUD) or implant, new research shows.
(levonorgestrel-releasing) Intrauterine System
Mirena (levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system) contains 52 mg of LNG, a progestin, and is intended to provide an initial release rate of approximately 20 mcg/day of LNG.
Levonorgestrel USP, (-)-13-Ethyl-17-hydroxy-18,19-dinor-17α-pregn-4-en-20-yn-3-one, the active ingredient in Mirena, has a molecular weight of 312.4, a molecular formula of C21H28O2, and the following structural formula:
Mirena consists of a T-shaped polyethylene frame (T-body) with a steroid reservoir (hormone elastomer core) around the vertical stem. The reservoir consists of a white or almost white cylinder, made of a mixture of levonorgestrel and silicone (polydimethylsiloxane), containing a total of 52 mg levonorgestrel. The reservoir is covered by a semi-opaque silicone (polydimethylsiloxane) membrane. The T-body is 32 mm in both the horizontal and vertical directions. The polyethylene of the T-body is compounded with barium sulfate, which makes it radiopaque. A monofilament brown polyethylene removal thread is attached to a loop at the end of the vertical stem of the T-body. The polyethylene of the removal thread contains iron oxide as a colorant (see Figure 10).
The components of Mirena, including its packaging, are not manufactured using natural rubber latex.
Figure 10: Mirena
Mirena is packaged sterile within an inserter. The inserter (Figure 11), which is used for insertion of Mirena into the uterine cavity, consists of a symmetric two-sided body and slider that are integrated with flange, lock, pre-bent insertion tube and plunger. The outer diameter of the insertion tube is 4.4 mm. The vertical stem of Mirena is loaded in the insertion tube at the tip of the inserter. The arms are pre-aligned in the horizontal position. The removal threads are contained within the insertion tube and handle. Once Mirena has been placed, the inserter is discarded.
Figure 11: Diagram of Inserter
What are the possible side effects of levonorgestrel intrauterine system (Mirena)?
Get emergency medical help if you have severe pain in your lower stomach or side. This could be a sign of a tubal pregnancy (a pregnancy that implants in the fallopian tube instead of the uterus). A tubal pregnancy is a medical emergency.
The levonorgestrel intrauterine device may become embedded into the wall of the uterus, or may perforate (form a hole) in the uterus. If this occurs, the device may no longer prevent pregnancy, or it may move outside the uterus and cause scarring, infection, or damage to other organs. If the device embeds in or...
Last reviewed on RxList: 3/15/2017
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Additional Mirena Information
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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