Essure Removal and What You Need to Know
The Essure® System for Permanent Birth Control from German-owned company Bayer was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for women in 2002. In July 2018, Bayer announced that by the end of 2018 it would stop selling the device in the U.S. — the only country where Essure has remained available. This news comes after reports that many women may have had adverse events related to the implanted device.
While some women have had no problems with the Essure birth control system, others may have developed allergic reactions to the nickel material of the implanted coils and/or experienced other Essure complications, including displaced coils and ectopic pregnancies. According to a July 20, 2018 announcement from Bayer and related announcements from the FDA, the Associated Press and other news outlets, the company states that the safety of its Essure implant has not changed.
The Essure System for Birth Control
The Essure is comprised of two tiny implantable metal coils that are inserted into the fallopian tubes during an in-office procedure. The coils were designed to remain in the fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancy by blocking fertilization of a woman’s eggs. Once implanted, scar tissue forms around the tiny coils, holding them in place.
Many women are seeking Essure removal, but it is important to be well-informed before proceeding with the removal procedure.
4 Things to Know Before Seeking Essure Removal
#1 – Essure removal requires the expertise of a gynecologic surgeon. Women experiencing side effects or complications from the Essure device may need to have the coils taken out. There can be some potential risks associated with removal, but these risks can be minimized by seeking care from a gynecologist who has expertise in safe Essure removal and experience performing these procedures.
#2 – Make sure symptoms are related to Essure and not caused by something else. Symptoms of one gynecology condition often overlap with symptoms of another. In some cases, women experiencing symptoms after Essure implantation have found their symptoms were related to other underlying gynecology conditions that had not been previously diagnosed or treated. Once those conditions were treated, the symptoms resolved. A medical evaluation with an experienced gynecologist will help determine if symptoms are associated with the Essure or something else.
Some commonly reported Essure side effects and symptoms include:
- Heavy or irregular bleeding
- Pelvic pain or back pain
- Joint problems
- Metallic taste in the mouth
- Hives, rash, swelling, itching
Many of these symptoms can be linked to a nickel allergy, while others may be related to another gynecology condition.
#3 – Sometimes it may be safe to leave the Essure implants in place. Many women who have encountered problems with their Essure implants have filed Essure lawsuits with the manufacturer. Other women may fear their Essure coils must also be removed, even if they are not experiencing symptoms. Essure removal may not be necessary in every case. Some women receive the birth control benefits of Essure without suffering any adverse effects. A consult with a gynecology specialist who is familiar with the Essure system can help determine the best action to take in your individual case.
#4 – Essure implants should be removed intact. Gynecology experts have identified a few surgical methods that are safest for removing the Essure coils intact. Not all gynecologists have experience with these methods, so it is important to seek Essure removal from a gynecology specialist who is experienced in hysteroscopic removal, cornual resection and/or robotic hysterectomy. These are the procedures that can be safely performed for Essure removal by an experienced gynecology surgeon.
At miVIP Surgery Centers, Essure removal is performed by gynecologists trained in robotics and other minimally invasive techniques. The benefits of robotic and laparoscopic procedures include smaller scars, shorter procedure times and faster recovery. Many patients have also reported less pain after laparoscopic procedures as compared with traditional surgery. As with any surgical procedure, complications can occur with Essure removal and individual results and outcomes vary.
If you have experienced problems with an Essure birth control device, contact miVIP today at (844) 237-5067 to learn more about minimally invasive Essure removal and other gynecologic treatments that can help resolve symptoms. Schedule a consultation with a gynecologist at miVIP who has expertise in Essure removal.
This article was reviewed by a board-certified gynecology expert as part of miVIP’s Healthy Living Recommendations.
Get to know our gynecology experts by visiting the miVIP Physician Directory.
Bayer to stop sales of birth control device tied to injuries. By Matthew Perrone and Lindsey Tanner. The Associated Press, July 20, 2018.
“Tips and advice for Essure removal.” Ob.Gyn.News.July 2017. https://www.mdedge.com/obgynnews/article/140936/gynecology/tips-and-advice-essure-removal
“Essure Removal for the Treatment of Device-Attributed Symptoms: An Expanded Case Series and Follow-up Survey.”Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology. June 2017. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28599885
“Removing Essure implant poses new risks to patients.” Modern Healthcare. November 2016. http://www.modernhealthcare.com/article/20161122/NEWS/161129968“What is a Hysteroscopy?” Modern Medicine Network. June 2011.