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J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care. 2014 Apr;40(2):122-5. doi: 10.1136/jfprhc-2013-100585. Epub 2013 Sep 25.

Do intrauterine device/intrauterine system users check their threads?

Author information

1
Specialist Registrar in Sexual and Reproductive Health, Aneurin Bevan Health Board - Sexual and Reproductive Health, Newport, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Expulsion of an intrauterine device (IUD) occurs in about 1 in 20 women and expulsion may not be noticed by the user. Current guidance recommends that users are instructed to check regularly for their threads. This is the first study to explore the reality of how women feel about checking their threads and the details surrounding how frequently checks are done.

METHODS:

One hundred consecutive IUD users were interviewed regarding their type of device, duration of use, frequency of thread checking, prompts for checking and reasons for not checking.

RESULTS:

Only 23% checked their threads regularly and 51% had never done so. The most common reason for not checking was forgetting about it.

CONCLUSIONS:

Despite being advised to do so, the majority of users do not check their threads at all and fewer than one-quarter of them check regularly. We propose that advice offered about thread checking should be given less emphasis and suggested more for user reassurance.

KEYWORDS:

intrauterine devices; intrauterine systems; long-acting reversible contraception; qualitative research

PMID:
24068572
DOI:
10.1136/jfprhc-2013-100585
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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