Are Mirena and Paragard the Same Thing?
Mirena (levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device) and ParaGard (intrauterine copper contraceptive) are forms of birth control that are hormone-releasing systems placed in your uterus (intra-uterine device, or IUD) to prevent pregnancy.
A difference is Mirena is effective for up to 5 years, while ParaGard is effective for up to 10 years.
Another difference is Mirena uses a form of the female hormone progesterone, while ParaGard is hormone free.
Mirena is also used for the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding in women.
What Are Possible Side Effects of Mirena?
Side effects of Mirena include:
- missed periods (amenorrhea),
- bleeding and spotting between periods,
- heavier bleeding during the first few weeks after device insertion,
- abdominal/pelvic pain,
- ovarian cysts,
- back pain,
- breast tenderness or pain,
- weight gain,
- changes in hair growth,
- changes in mood,
- loss of interest in sex,
- itching or skin rash, and
- puffiness in the face, hands, ankles, or feet.
What Are Possible Side Effects of Paragard?
Common side effects of Paragard include:
- pelvic inflammatory disease (PID),
- difficult removals (surgery may sometimes be needed to remove ParaGard),
- perforation of the uterine wall, or
- expulsion of ParaGard from the uterus
What is Mirena?
- Mirena is a hormone-releasing system placed in your uterus by your healthcare provider to prevent pregnancy for up to 5 years.
- Mirena can also lessen menstrual blood loss in women who have heavy menstrual flow and who also want to use a birth control method that is placed in the uterus to prevent pregnancy.
- Mirena can be removed by your healthcare provider at any time.
- Mirena is recommended for women who have had at least one child.
Mirena is a small flexible plastic T-shaped system that slowly releases a progestin hormone called levonorgestrel that is often used in birth control pills. Because Mirena releases levonorgestrel into your uterus, only small amounts of the hormone enter your blood. Mirena does not contain estrogen.
Two thin threads are attached to the stem of Mirena. The threads are the only part of Mirena you can feel when Mirena is in your uterus; however, unlike a tampon string, the threads do not extend outside your body.
What is Paragard?
What is Paragard?
Paragard is a copper releasing device that is placed in your uterus to prevent pregnancy for up to 10 years. ParaGard® is made of white plastic in the shape of a "T." Copper is wrapped around the stem and arms of the "T". Two white threads are attached to the stem of the "T". The threads are the only part of ParaGard that you can feel when ParaGard is in your uterus. ParaGard and its components do not contain latex.
What Drugs Interact With Mirena?
Mirena may interact with insulin, blood thinners, or steroids
What Drugs Interact With Paragard?
Though Paragard is not known to interact with other drugs, Paragard may interact with other drugs.
How Should Mirena Be Taken?
Mirena contains 52 mg of levonorgestrel (LNG). Initially, LNG is released at a dose rate of approximately 20 mcg/day. This rate decreases progressively to half that value after 5 years. Mirena must be removed by the end of the fifth year and can be replaced at the time of removal with a new Mirena if continued contraceptive protection is desired. Drug interactions and warnings include potential interactions with insulin, warfarin (Coumadin) and steroids. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Mirena should not be used during pregnancy. This device can cause severe infection, miscarriage, premature birth, or death of the mother if it is left in place during pregnancy. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant while using the Mirena intrauterine system. Small amounts of progestins such as those in Mirena pass into breast milk. If you have recently had a baby and are breastfeeding, wait until your baby is at least 6 weeks old before you start using Mirena.
How Should Paragard Be Taken?
ParaGard is placed in your uterus during an office visit. Your healthcare provider first examines you to find the position of your uterus. Next, he or she will cleanse your vagina and cervix, measure your uterus, and then slide a plastic tube containing ParaGard into your uterus. The tube is removed, leaving ParaGard inside your uterus. Two white threads extend into your vagina. The threads are trimmed so they are just long enough for you to feel with your fingers when doing a self-check. As ParaGard goes in, you may feel cramping or pinching. Some women feel faint, nauseated, or dizzy for a few minutes afterwards. Your healthcare provider may ask you to lie down for a while and to get up slowly.
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Bayer. Mirena Medication Guide.
CooperSurgical, Inc. Paragard Product Monograph.