I thought IUDs were dangerous?


IUDs got a bad rap in the past because of the Dalkon sheild - this old IUD had a high risk of pelvic infection, and it caused many people to become sterile. It had a multifilament string that allowed bacteria to climb up from the vagina into the sterile uterus.

The current IUDs have a monofilament tail that does not increase the risk of ascending infection. Cultures for gonorrhea and chlamydia should be done prior to placing an IUD, and IUD users should be monogamous (one sexual partner). More partners increases the risk of upper pelvic infection.

If infection is going to happen with IUD placement, it usually does so within the first 21 days after insertion. It is up to the discretion of the individual physician whether to give antibiotics after insertion.

Wendy Fried, M.D., FACOG, FACS, is an OB/Gyn with Northern Obstetrics and Gynecology, PC in North Hills, New York

Disclaimer: The information provided in this document is for educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Only your own physician knows all the important details of your specific medical and personal history and should be the only one to give you advice regarding your own medical care. You should never disregard medical advice or delay seeking medical advice or treatment because of something you have read herein. If you have any questions whatsoever about your medical health or believe you have a medical problem or disease, you should contact your medical doctor or healthcare provider.