At Twenty-five Harley Street, our gynaecologists offer a contraceptive coil fitting service, allowing you to be fitted with either a Mirena coil or a copper coil, depending on your needs and requirements. Coils – also known as intrauterine devices or systems - are 98-99 % effective, and provide long-term peace of mind for anyone looking for a hassle-free form of contraception.
What is a contraceptive coil?
There are two types of coil, a hormonal coil (Mirena), called an IUS and a Copper IUD. They are T-shaped and fit into the opening to the uterus, preventing pregnancy. The copper in the IUD acts as a spermicide, affecting sperm mobility. It also inhibits the egg’s ability to implant into the womb. The Mirena releases a small amount of hormone, thinning your womb lining, to make it less attractive for an egg. This effect has the added bonus of making your periods lighter. Both types also affect “cervical mucus” causing it to thicken and preventing sperm from reaching the egg.
Should I have a Mirena or copper coil?
Talk to your gynaecologist about which coil is best for you. Mirena is commonly recommended to help manage heavy or painful periods. It may also help reduce bleeding caused by fibroids and endometriosis. For many people who use it, their periods get significantly lighter or go away completely. However, some women prefer, or are advised to avoid hormonal contraceptives. In those cases, the copper coil might be more appropriate. The copper coil may initially cause heavier periods, but after a period of adjustment, periods get back to normal.
What are the advantages of the Mirena IUS?
Lighter periods is obviously a big plus. It is an extremely effective form of contraception – it is over 99% effective at preventing pregnancy for as long as you want, for up to 5 years. Once the coil has been fitted, you won’t have to think about it. When you wish to get pregnant, simply have the Mirena removed, and your fertility will be returned to normal.
What are the advantages of a copper IUD?
For many women, the absence of hormones in this device will be a big advantage; a small amount of women have sensitivity to any form of hormonal contraception. The copper IUD is extremely effective. Fitting a copper IUD can also act as an emergency contraception, so if you’ve had unprotected sex and you’re considering a coil, this could be a good option.
When is a coil not suitable?
The coil is suitable for most women. Indeed, one study revealed that the coil was the choice of contraception for female gynaecologists, which demonstrates its convenience and efficacy. Your gynaecologist will be able to advise whether this is the best form of contraception for you. Although the copper coil is very effective at preventing pregnancy in the rare attempts it fails, ectopic pregnancies may be a risk.
What happens when you have a coil inserted?
It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to fit a coil; the procedure is similar to a smear test, and the coil IUD or Mirena is inserted through the cervix and into the womb. The techniques of our experienced gynaecologists should minimise discomfort, and taking over-the-counter pain medication will also help. There may be some cramping and bleeding for a few days after the fitting of a coil, but this should settle down, allowing hassle-free contraception.
25 Harley Street's Consultant Gynaecologists
Mr Gardner is Clinical Director for Gynaecology at the Queen Alexandra Hospital. A specialist in endometrial cancer screening and colposcopy.
A consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist based in London. Within the NHS he practises at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust. Mr Athanasias has developed special skills in minimally invasive surgery.
Miss Tania Adib is a Consultant Gynaecologist at Queen’s Hospital, where she is the Lead Clinician for Colposcopy, and Honorary Consultant Gynaecologist at St Bartholomew’s Hospital.
Dr Christilla Nevi qualified in Paris as a specialist medical gynaecologist. She has worked as a specialist for ten years.
You can phone to discuss a consultation on 020 3883 9525, or email [email protected]