Implants such as Implanon NXT and hormone intrauterine systems/devices (IUS) such as Mirena and Jaydess are contraceptives that use the same class of hormone - a progestogen - to prevent pregnancy.
Implants sit in the skin under your inner arm whereas the intrauterine systems/devices, as the name implies are inserted into the uterus.
The costs of an implant and a hormone IUD are similar - they both cost around 180 Euro excluding doctor and clinic fees. Both types of contraceptives require insertion, replacement, and removal in a doctor's clinic in a small procedure that usually only requires a bit of local anaesthetic.
Both types of contraceptive can produce some side effects, such as headaches, bloating, mood swings, breast tenderness, and acne, due to the progestogen hormone they release.
So what's the difference between them?
Since the implant releases the hormone into the bloodstream whereas the IUS releases the hormone directly into the uterus, the implant is more likely to interact with other medicines. For example St John's wort, medicines to treat TB and HIV, and medicines to prevent seizures can reduce the efficacy of the implant but have no effect on an IUS.
Since the implant is under your skin, there is no risk of it coming out without noticing. With the IUS there is a small risk that it may be dislodged, especially in the first month after insertion, and you should periodically check if it is still in place.
The implant, which sits under the skin under your inner arm, is more noticeable and palpable than an IUS. Some women do not like having a small plastic rod under their skin.
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