Conception After Mirena IUD

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
I am 24 years old and had Mirena put in 15 months ago. I have not had any prior pregnancies. I am having it taken out in the morning because my husband and I want to start trying to get pregnant.

I have not had any periods while having the Mirena but spotting here and there. I am concerned that the Mirena will give me complications when trying to conceive. I have also heard that you need to wait a while afterwards to start trying to avoid a miscarriage or chemical pregnancy. Others say it is safe to try immediately and your body will know when its ready. I am really nervous after reading all of this information!

Please Help!

ANSWER

Working backwards, I have had MANY clients who conceived within a week of taking their Mirena out. That said, there is no way to predict what will happen in your case, especially since we don't even know if you are fertile since you have never had a baby. Sometimes the contraception gets blamed for problems that were there in the first place. Also, we don't know exactly how you might have responded to the hormones in the Mirena, as every woman is different.

Ideally, you would go on prenatal vitamins three months before you take the Mirena out, in case you do get pregnant right away. So if you're not already on the vitamins, you should be! They are available over the counter. And good luck!

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.