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Contraception, hormones, menstrual cycle

Bleeding after a Mirena IUD insertion, what to expect

img_small-t-shaped-deviceThe levonorgestrel intrauterine system (Mirena IUS) is a popular IUD. It contains the hormone levonorgestrel and over time many women gets lighter periods or even lose their periods altogether. This is a desirable side effect. The only problem is the promise of very light or no periods and combined with long acting reversible contraception comes with a price – many women have an initial bout of irregular spotting and/or bleeding. Unfortunately, many women are not adequately counseled about this possibility and as a result most women who get their Mirena removed for reasons other than wanting to get pregnant do so in the first 6 months and the most common reason cited is irregular bleeding.

Preventing early removal of the Mirena is important for the following reasons:

  • Contain costs. IUDs themselves are expensive and there is often a co-payment for insertion as well.
  • Prevent unplanned pregnancies. Long acting reversible contraception (LARC) is the most effective form of contraception because there is no user error, and so with the IUD out the next method chosen is likely to be less effective when considering real world experience. Not everyone has a plan for their post IUD contraception and that time of considering what to use next is very high risk for an unplanned pregnancy.
  • Reduce the burden of complications. While significant complications with IUD insertion are very low (less than 1%), they are all associated with the insertion. If you have an IUD inserted and pulled out 3 months later you have assumed that risk for nothing.

The best way to prevent dissatisfaction related to a known side effect (irregular bleeding) is to be adequately counseled about that side effect. So how common is irregular bleeding after a Mirena IUS?

There are a couple of high quality studies to consider. These studies followed women after the insertion and they completed daily diaries to record bleeding, so the data is prospective (these were typically studies looking at ways to reduce post Mirena insertion irregular bleeding).

The average number of days with any bleeding in the first 90 days after Mirena insertion was 35 in one study (May 2013), but it ranged from 18-55. In another study (Sept 2011) the average number of bleeding days that required a pad or tampon in the first 84 days after insertion was 22-32 days, but 25% of women bled for 33-55 days (the longest was 64 days).

While the studies aren’t perfect (they varied slightly in how they quantified the bleeding) and the diaries were not collected by investigators daily, but rather batched and collected later, they do confirm that in the first 3 months after a Mirena is inserted there is a fair bit of spotting or bleeding. If you add the days together it totals about a month, but 50% of women will bleed more than that.

Bleeding for the equivalent or at least (and possibly more) than 1 month out of the first 3 in a random way is a nuisance. Studies tell us that overall its much less blood that a period, it’s just smaller amounts with an unpredictable pattern. However, this nuisance bleeding decreases significantly over time and is important to put in the big picture. If you look at all methods of reversible contraception (Mirena, copper IUD, pill, patch, depo-provera shot. ring, and implant) women with the Mirena IUS have the highest satisfaction scores at 1 year. Also, looking at all methods of birth control, women who chose a Mirena are more likely to be using that method at a year compared to women who chose a different method.

While you should be prepared for a fair bit of irregular bleeding in the first 3 months after your Mirena IUS is inserted (and if you are in the 50% who bleed for fewer than 30 days, then great!) you should also know that if you stick with it by 1 year you are more likely to be highly satisfied with your Mirena (and less likely to be pregnant) than if you had chosen a different method.

Screen shot 2013-05-25 at 11.03.10 AM

Adapted from Peipert et al. Data from Contraceptive CHOICE Project published in Obstetrics and Gynecology May 2011

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Discussion

74 thoughts on “Bleeding after a Mirena IUD insertion, what to expect

  1. I am facing bills that my insurance is not covering because of a Mirena that caused massive bleeding problems over 30 days in a row. I had a Mirena previously for 5 years without serious consequence and I believe that the second IUD was not inserted correctly (the doctor made a comment about tearing that surprised me and the pain was significant over a month after insertion). I am now afraid to 1) return to that doctor 2) find an alternative method of contraception and 3) be stuck with a $1000+ bill for receiving incompetent care. What do I do now?

    Posted by ✩ evonne heyning ∞ (@amoration) | May 25, 2013, 11:26 am
    • Evonne, have you thought about trying the Implanon (Nexplanon in some areas) implant? It’s progestin-only like Mirena, and lasts for three years. It also has very similar efficacy rates.

      It’s inserted under the skin of your upper arm and you can be in and out of your appointment in minutes.

      Best of luck.

      Posted by Boostick | May 26, 2013, 4:15 am
  2. Thanks for this. I’m going to share with my clients. I loved my Mirena, and I recommend my clients talk to their providers about it. A no-fuss, reversible birth control method compatible with breastfeeding is just what the new mom needs.

    Posted by Jennifer Thorson, Doula | May 25, 2013, 11:35 am
  3. That sounds awful, Evonne. I hope you find a solution.

    Posted by wileywitch | May 25, 2013, 11:43 am
  4. Dr. Jen Thank you for this analysis. i am going to actually highlight some of the areas and give it to my patients.

    Janis L. Enzenbacher, MD
    Piermont, NY

    Posted by Janis L. Enzenbacher | May 25, 2013, 12:04 pm
  5. Thank you for the thorough post – and timely, as I just got one this week :) My care providers actually did mention this, and warned me that barring horrendous side-effects they would *strongly* recommend that I not make any decision about removals til 6 months after; they were also very insistent that I stay on the pill for a week after insertion, so I haven’t had any bleeding yet. But whenever I do I’ll return to this post!

    Posted by QoB | May 25, 2013, 4:01 pm
  6. Thanks for another excellent post. I’ve just hit one year with my Mirena and love it. I never experienced any post-insertion bleeding, making me one of the lucky ones, I suppose. :-)

    Posted by Claire | May 25, 2013, 4:42 pm
  7. Thanks for the information, it will be very helpful. Almost all of the women I know are hesitant to try an IUD/IUS. One of the top concerns is the severity and duration of cramping post-insertion. Do the cramps last for more than a few days, or is this one of those overblown concerns that gets fanned by Yahoo Answers, etc.?

    Posted by Ryan R. Persaud | May 26, 2013, 9:57 pm
    • For what an anecdote is worth: I had 3-4 whopper cramps during insertion, then medium cramps most of the rest of the day, well-controlled by paracetamol, ibuprofen, and heat (and didn’t stop me cycling home from work). Some mild cramps the following morning; after that, nothing.
      Everyone is different – it would be nice to see some actual stats. But if you want more anecdata, the Livejournal group has looooads: http://iud-divas.livejournal.com/

      Posted by QoB | May 28, 2013, 11:38 am
    • I’m two weeks in to my Mirena insertion, and I still have what I would call significant cramping–about as bad as the first day of my period. I’ve been spotting constantly, but it’s not heavy. I also feel tense and uncomfortable in the abdominal/ pelvic region, which I used to think was caused by tampon use. I now suspect that I just have a very sensitive cervix, as sex can also produce the same discomfort (it’s not pain so much as pressure). I’m trying to keep in mind that this will probably all pass!

      Posted by steff | July 24, 2013, 7:10 am
      • This is exactly how I’m feeling – has it inproved or did you end up using another form of contraception??

        Posted by Laura | July 3, 2014, 8:38 am
  8. I am seriously considering the Mirena IUD. I’ve been on the pill for 20 years, and a few years ago switched to a pill with only 4 periods a year. It took me about 2 years to get to the point where I didn’t have random spotting every month or two, so I’m going guess that I am more likely than not to experience more spotting with the IUD too. I’m wondering if being on the pill before starting a hormonal IUD, does anything to shorten the period of adjustment. If I’m currently having 1 period every 3 months, and I switch to a hormonal IUD, will it just to maintain my current cycle or will it be like starting anew?

    Posted by MM | May 28, 2013, 7:39 am
  9. I’m starting to dislike this Mirena. I’ve had it in since April and i’ve been getting cramping and bleeding almkst everyday. The cramping feels like small labor pains which i wish would stop! My gyno says, it’s normal but everyone else says different. I’m not sure what to do from here. My sex life sucks. I’m losing hope even though all i’ve heard were good things about the Mirena.

    Posted by Bonnie Kennedy | July 18, 2013, 11:21 pm
    • It’s well within the realm of normal. Just like any other form of contraceptive every user has a different experience.

      I bled for six months on mirena and then never again for twelve years (on #3 now)

      The cramps you’re getting are also not too unusual. Uterine contractions of any kind (labor, periods, whatever) are annoying but can be mediated. One solution is to use a low dose pill for a couple of months just to stabilise your endometrial tissue, then yet should be ok for the rest of your mirenas life.

      Posted by neverdefiled | July 19, 2013, 11:13 am
    • Hi I had a mirena iud put in last Feb. I have had nothing but problems with it. I have basically had my period EVERYDAY for almost a year. It really is depressing. On top of the bleeding my vagina now holds too much bad bacteria. I have had yeast infetions and now am diagnosed with BV (bacterial vaginitis). Sex life is NOT anymore. I have a constant order, discharge and bleeding. I have to wear a pad everyday which is holding the heat and moisture down there causing more bacteria! They keep telling me to wait it out. I can’t do this anymore! I talked about a hysterectomy and they say to just wait it out again. I want this done with.

      THEREFORE…Would I recommend a mirania iud….NO
      would I recommend a bladder sling….NO
      would I recommend a corrective postuier lift…NO.

      I wish I could go back 5 years and be ‘normal’ again!

      VERY FRUSTRATING
      wish me luck on my hysterectomy….lol

      Posted by BRENDA STONER-SZUCS | January 5, 2014, 4:11 pm
    • Hi. I really feel ur pain. 7th June this year is xactly 1 year since I’ve had the mirena on. I bleed after every 2 weeks and my sex life is no longer the same. My hubby is upset n moody all the time. The pains r a lot lesser but I’m don’t wanna go back to my gynae coz of the cash costs.

      Posted by rosanna | July 1, 2014, 12:09 pm
  10. Question:

    I’m in need of replacing my mirena because its been 5 years now. Will the second time be another 3 months of bleeding and wishing for death? Or was that a one time thing?

    I gave birth to 3 of my 4 kids without any pain meds but having mirena inserted was like torture. It wasn’t quick and easy at all. But then again, I had a military NP and a room full of students doing my first one. Talk about awkward.

    Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated!!

    Posted by Kelly | July 21, 2013, 12:19 pm
  11. I just had my Mirena removed after 120 days. I had it inserted to control heavy menstrual bleeding — super tampons every hour on the hour for three to four days. I bled for 115 of those days — sometimes just spotting, sometimes heavier. I had heavier periods than normal every 21 days. I even bled through with additional oral progesterone. Crazy!! Sometimes things just do not work out. It may be expensive and dangerous to put in and remove, but my health is more imporant!!

    Posted by Kelly | July 27, 2013, 7:29 am
    • It’s been a year for me….and I bleed EVERYDAY! I get infections and BV now. Wish I never did it. I complained about things 3 months into it, 5 months, 6 months and now it’s 12 months. They say to just deal with it. Ummm no more. I’m getting it removed and a hysterectomy. They say a hystercetomy will be 6 weeks to 3 months of recovery time, and make that sound bad. I don’t think they understand it’s been a year ALREADY of hell. Recovery from a hysterectomy can’t be any worse then this, and won’t last a year! Wish me luck

      Posted by BRENDA STONER-SZUCS | January 5, 2014, 4:16 pm
  12. I had my Mirena inserted in Feb 2013 so going on 6 months. I still get a regular heavy 7 day period every month BUT I love the fact that I rarely don’t get any period pain maybe the odd one or two. I know it must be trying to work I’m just not sure how long until I should see some changes with the period side of things?? I didn’t get any post insertion bleeding but when I got my first period after the Mirena I bled for 2 weeks. Just wanting some answers.. Someone mentioned that I may need to go on the pill for a month and sometimes that sorts it out…

    Thanks

    Tori

    Posted by victoria | July 29, 2013, 4:05 am
  13. I had Mirena inserted on May 13, 2013. I am almost 3 months in and have only had 39 days free of spotting. Until I read your post, I was ready to give up and call my doctor to take it out. I do hope the bleeding stops, although I must point out that it’s very light spotting, but nonetheless it is frustrating. My biggest complaint with the IUD isn’t so much the bleeding as it is the constant lower back pain. I’ve learned to ignore it, but sometimes the pain gets really strong. Has anyone else had bad lower back pain that does not go away? Will that pain stop eventually as my body adjusts?

    Posted by Nikol L | August 3, 2013, 11:40 pm
    • UPDATE: 2/12/14 (9 months later): My body is doing much better. The spotting has stopped and I get super light periods lasting 4-5 days. The lower back pain has gone away and I forget I even have it. I am happy now with my results and would recommend that if anyone is considering an IUD, to really look at the disadvantages and ask yourself “Can I endure up to a year of adjustments?” “Am I willing to wait it out to see what happens to my body?” This isn’t for everyone. I believe that I am fortunate. I feel so sorry for those women who are having a very bad experience. I hope it turns out well for all of you. BTW I am 43 and have had 3 children.

      Posted by Nikol L | February 12, 2014, 6:18 pm
  14. Im 42 and got the merina 4 months back to prevent excess bleeding which was painful for me .Im still suffering from the same problem of bleeding throughout the month and it is not stopping at all which has led to pain in my legs and back and feet.Please help and provide a solution for it.Thank you.

    Posted by Kusum | August 5, 2013, 11:58 pm
    • I’m experiencing the same thing
      Was bleeding heavy for 3 months had the mirena inserted few days ago and now the bleeding is worse that I’m literally wearing 3 pads at once and changing every hour and the back pain is awful I never have had back problems up till now
      Not sure what to do
      Go to emerge or what

      Posted by Angel | August 11, 2013, 6:37 am
  15. I had my mirena inserted August 15. My dr. Is a self-proclaimed IUD expert. The insertion was fast and only a little cramping during cervical anchoring. And my cervix opening was very difficult to get to (high and to the left! lol) I spotted for a day. Then started my period on time a week ago. It has been heavier than normal, but no associated cramping. But I never get cramps. My emotions are a little heightened. And my period is still going, tho very mild now with less clots, but still secreting clots once in a while followed by a small gush of blood. Still need a pad.

    Posted by Brianna | August 26, 2013, 3:46 pm
    • I am having the exact same thing. I had mine inserted on 9/25/13 and I just started my monthly Thur or Fri, however i’v been spotting on and off since the insertion. I would just like to know when will my 1st monthly decease. I’m almost at a 7 day mark. & my emotions are all over the place.

      Posted by Chelle | October 23, 2013, 1:57 pm
  16. I recently had my IUD placed. I am normally very heavy (changing super absorbency tampons every 2-3 hours and still wear liners to be safe) and bleed for at least 7-9 days. I had the IUD placed on my 1st day of my regular menstrual cycle….I am now on day #3 (day 2 & 3 are usually are my heaviest days) and I am hardly bleeding at all. I am certainly not complaining after reading everyone else’s posts, but wondering if anyone else has experienced this? I guess you can say I wasn’t expecting the IUD to work so quickly.

    Posted by Tanya | September 11, 2013, 11:16 am
  17. i am getting my mirena today i have never given birth so i just took the pills to relax my uterus… i’m on my 2 nd day of my regualr cycle … i had the inplant before and it was awesome until the last year…without pill i get cramps badly but been on it for 10 years now… always have a 7 day period but never very heavy… so wish me luck i guess

    Posted by lynn | September 19, 2013, 7:42 am
    • Hey Lynn,
      How did you get on with the Mirena, do you still have it? I got it 3 weeks ago and have also never given birth. I’ve had a lot of pain and non stop bleeding but i’m hoping it gets better.
      Any reply would be great!

      Posted by Julia | February 10, 2014, 12:18 pm
      • Julia – I’m curious how you’re doing now? I had my mirena inserted two weeks ago (during my period), and I haven’t stopped bleeding. I had one day where there wasn’t much bleeding about 5 days after insertion, then the bleeding began again the day after and hasn’t stopped. It’s a moderate to heavy bleed. I also have never given birth. I experienced cramping the first few days, but the cramping has pretty much gone away. I’m just hoping the bleeding stops soon.

        Posted by Shannon | June 9, 2014, 10:34 am
  18. Am 46 and had mirena inserted 18 months ago at first regular spotting and light bleeding for about six months then completely nothing for six months I thought great. Then all of a sudden periods are back with a vengenance non stop bleeding every day for about four weeks just a show for a couple of weeks then bleeding again. Been like that for months now. Going to have this thing removed.

    Posted by kathy | September 28, 2013, 4:52 am
    • Wow, same here. Had it for a year, with no periods, then all of the sudden in June regular periods. Then this month, the darn period will not stop. Already been 14 days or pure aggravation. I’m thinking about having this removed and my tubes tied…..tired of this.

      Posted by Cece | December 10, 2013, 7:23 pm
    • Have your gyn check for fibroids. I had that happen. I had my second mirena inserted in Aug 2013. No issues for five months and then spotting and bleeding for a couple of months. Any bleeding was odd for me. When I had the ultrasound, they found I had a large fibroid that needed to be removed. Fibroids are quite common in women our age (40’s). I had a new mirena inserted in Feb 2014 and have had nonstop spotting since! Making me a bit frustrated because I didn’t have an issue with the others until the fibroid. Also getting yeast infections from the constant spotting. Ugh, having trouble waiting for the 6months.

      Posted by Amanda | June 20, 2014, 5:49 pm
  19. ive had a miscarriage before I got marina was still spoting but it had passed I have been bleeding heavy for two weeks now I don’t know if I should get it checked out or not my husband says my strings are uneven but its been like that since I got it what do I do?

    Posted by abby | September 30, 2013, 8:23 am
  20. I had Mirena put in in the middle of May, 6 weeks after having my daughter. The insertion wasn’t terrible, mostly pinching. I didn’t feel any pain afterwards. I saw my ob in the middle of August and explained to him that I’m still bleeding about 2 1/2 weeks out of the month. He suggested I take ortho tri cyclen to give me the estrogen that Mirena lacks and that it would make my bleeding stop. Bad idea! Since middle of August I have been bleeding constantly! Never know when it’s gonna happen and I can’t wear a pad or tampon all day everyday. And ruined underwear to top it off. I’m thinking of having it removed and seeing a different of.

    Posted by Crystal | September 30, 2013, 3:13 pm
  21. Can someone please tell me if I should be worried? I am on my second Mirena. My first was great, about every 3 months I would spot for 2-3 days. My second mirena was inserted a yr ago. My periods are getting consistently worse every month. Before my kids and bc my periods were light and 3-4 days. Now it lasts about a week every month exactly on schedule and way heavier than ever before. Now cramps are getting worse and I experience some pms the week before I start. I am concerned that this is a sign that it is not working. Should I have it replaced? should I be concerned that I could get pregnant? Very Fertile!

    Posted by marissa | October 11, 2013, 2:00 pm
  22. I now know why the Mirena keeps you from getting pregnant. I got mine inserted on September 26th, and have not stopped bleeding since. You can’t get pregnant, if you don’t stop bleeding long enough to have sex. My biggest issue is not the bleeding, even though that is annoying. My problem is the hormonal issues. I have hot flashes all day every day, I have lower back pain, and cramping later in the afternoon, and my mood swings are very very tempermental. I just never know when I am going to cry, scream, or want to rip someone’s head off. Will it ever stop??

    Posted by Casey | October 15, 2013, 8:13 am
  23. I had the Mirena IUD implanted two days ago and the insertion was SOOOO painful! My Doctor had advised I take Ibuprofen prior to the visit (and I did). I should have had something much stronger. It felt like labor pain. AND I know labor pain, had my son naturally 17 years ago, and two days ago I felt the pain I again I felt 17 years ago. Now it’s been a couple of days and the back pain is bad. I am to the point of taking pain pills. Is this backpain normal????

    Posted by toni | October 17, 2013, 3:17 pm
    • I wouldn’t resort to pain pills. Go to your doctor first. That’s strange that it hurt that bad. I can’t take pain at all and I had it put in with nothing. I felt a little cramp but nothing like my labor. You should tell your doctor for sure.

      Posted by sandybflowers | October 19, 2013, 11:07 am
  24. I have had 3 children and now my periods are very heavy. I decided to get the mirena to help. It was put in on the last day of my period for easier insertion. After a couple of days with no period I became very moody and tired. About one week later I’m spotting and it’s stringy. Kind of like when I ovulate. Should I be bleeding right after my period this soon? And why is it stringy or like mucus?

    Posted by Sandy | October 19, 2013, 10:58 am
  25. hhhhmmmm…..I’ve been on Depo for a 15 months, insane weight gain, had Mirena put in 3 weeks ago. Bled the first day and nothing since. Should be interesting once the depo wears off (got my shot on 9/30 got mirena about 4 weeks later so no lapse in coverage…I see sperm, I get pregnant and since I’m divorced and my kids are 12 and 17 that is NOT an option for me). Wonder how it is gonna be when the depo wears off. So far no issues with Mirena except a few days of feeling “full” for lack of a better word. Any one else been there?

    Posted by ANC | November 14, 2013, 5:16 pm
  26. I had the Mirena for 11 months (Sept 2012-Aug 2013) and out of that time I bled almost the entire time. I would estimate about 30 days of that time frame to have been blood free. I have since had it taken out, and STILL have been bleeding ever since. My doctor has given me 2 depo shots and birth control pills to stop the bleeding but it is relentless. I thought I was the only one who experienced the gushes and I have to go to work! I always have a big purse in which I keep my “kit” that includes extra panties and several bulky sanitary napkins. I live in a small town where my doctor is pretty much the only one here and they have no idea what to do. I have switched 3 doctors in that office. The only resolution they are giving me is to have my uterus removed however, I’m 30 with one child and would like more children. How long exactly did the excessive bleeding last? What did you do to ease the cramping? This is month 3 for me of this.

    Posted by Nikki | November 16, 2013, 8:36 pm
  27. I had my mirena inserted yesterday, first day of my normal cycle. The process was very painful for me (tricky uterus–high and to the right), and I experienced waves of pretty intense cramping for the first 15 minutes or so after it was in. After that, the cramping was much lighter. I had a bit of a ‘meh’ feeling all evening, but it was mostly from the intensity of the procedure. Today, bleeding is rather light, much lighter than a normal day two of my cycle, and cramping is barely noticeable. I’m taking 400mg of naproxen every 8 hours or so, which is definitely helping.

    Posted by Amie | December 11, 2013, 8:30 am
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  30. I had my first IUD after my second child. I had tried the pill and shot before. My periods were outta control. Super plus tampon every hour! Big pads in case I couldn’t make it on time. Puddles every morning. The IUD was heaven sent. Yes it hurt getting it. Cramps, spotting, for a lil while. Then five years of no periods. I was so thrilled. So at the five and half year marker I was back to spotting and some bleeding. Got mine replaced. January now. Had it replaced in Sept. I am back to having the cramps and bleeding still. I am going on week three straight of bleeding. What the heck happened to my heaven sent blessing? It feels like hell. I’m gonna tough it out. Butgeez. :( You all are not alone!

    Posted by Dawn | January 20, 2014, 1:44 pm
    • Dawn, I had a Mirena put in 5 years ago, never bled, had my second one put in last week, spotting already! Please tell me it gets better! I will have this thing removed and go back on the pill if I am going to bleed anyways!

      Posted by D | July 24, 2014, 7:28 pm
      • So far, since Sept I think, I still get very irregular periods. But It’s still a lot better than what it would be without it. I just started thinking I was done bleeding, after almost 2 mths, but it turned into one day bleeding, 2 days nothing, Then a week bleeding, 2 days off, now today, back to bleeding. But It’s all very light. Most of the time, just when I wipe. I’m going to stick it out cause I remind myself, It’s still better than without. I am going to my gyno soon. I will let u all know what he says. :) good luck!!

        Posted by dawn | July 25, 2014, 6:33 am
  31. I had Mirena with my first child and didnt have any issues until the 4th year. I just had it put in after my son on Dec. 30th and started on Jan 14th and havent stopped…i guess this is normal??

    Posted by Amanda | January 22, 2014, 6:17 pm
  32. I had the Mirena IUD inserted 3.5 years ago due to complications from PCOS. It has been ok but for unknown reasons I’ve not stopped bleeding since. This is managed with Primolut 3 x a day. Although not ideal, the alternative would be severe cramping, blood loss and clotting due to the PCOS without the Mirena and Primolut. Any advice would be appreciated.

    Posted by Cassandra | January 24, 2014, 6:32 pm
  33. This was helpful for me. My Mirena insertion was about 26 days ago and I was looking for reassurance that my irregular spotting to bleeding frequency was expected. I haven’t kept a journal but I’ve had some bleeding maybe 1 in every 3 days, usually needing a tampon. I definitely plan to stick it out, and am already feeling much more reassured about contraceptive coverage than with the Pill, which I weas on for 8 years prior.

    Posted by 26yo nullip | January 25, 2014, 2:41 pm
  34. I’ve had my Mirena for one year and was advised by my GP to get one to control heavy bleeding. The first three months were awful – almost constant bleeding (periods lasted anything from 14 days to 20 days) with only 5 or 10 days between periods, along with bloating, hair loss and tender breasts. Things began to improve once I hit the six month mark. The bloating & sore breasts went away and is now only there during the usual PMS week. I’m still losing hair, but not nearly as much as before. My cycle is still regular (I get a period every 28 days) and the bleeding lasts for 14 days. So every month I have two weeks “on” and two weeks off. It’s really irritating, as I had a heavy 8-day bleed before Mirena and now I have a lighter 14-day bleed. Honestly, I don’t know which was / is worse! I plan on sticking it out, but really hope that the periods will start to get shorter, as I can’t live with this pattern forever. It is affecting my social life (no pool parties or swimming at the beach for two weeks each month – I’m too scared to use tampons in case I accidentally pull the Mirena out!).

    Posted by Suzy | February 1, 2014, 8:20 pm
  35. I had the mirena inserted a year ago a had bleed on and off in the first month n never had spotting or bleeding after that but now I have bleeding it’s day 2 and really bad pain and feel lethargic is this normal.?

    Posted by Chloe Pettit | February 24, 2014, 8:52 pm
  36. I had a Mirena place last August (2013)…it is now February and yes, my periods are lighter (I had it placed due to heavy bleeding)….but I have bleeding every 2 weeks. I am bleeding for anywhere from a few days to a week….then get a week off and then boom, I’m bleeding again. It is light – but what a pain! When does this become something I should worry about? My doctor keeps telling me – don’t worry – it’s lighter, so it’s working….
    Also, could having sex be causing it?

    Posted by Louise S | March 11, 2014, 6:59 am
  37. I got my Mirena put in about 10 days ago. I get migraines (all kinds) and used to be on Orthotricyclin years ago, but my new doctor wouldn’t prescribe it because of my migraines. I get horrible cramping with my periods — often having to take Torodol for the cramps or take a day off of work! But my periods only come every 34 days and last for 3-4 days at a time (one day of spotting, two of heavy, clotted bleeding that require pad and tampon changes every two hours, and one day of light flow). My hope is that the Mirena will help regulate my periods, reduce bleeding and eliminate cramps. And, of course, make sex more intimate with my partner (no need for barrier protection).

    The process of insertion was excruciating for me. I have a very high tolerance for pain (15+ migraines/month and all those horrible period cramps I have had since I was 11). Still, this was, by far, the worst pain of my life. The doctor insisted on using a large speculum, which no one has ever used on me (I have no kids), and that was like prying my pelvis apart. Then, she saw some hanging tissue and cut it off, and a polyp, which she also cut off. Now five minutes into the agony, she prepared for the IUD for insertion. I don’t recall any “clamping” of my cervix that others spoke of here, but that may be because I was hyperventilating from the pain of the speculum! I felt the device insert and spread out inside my uterus. It was like a wave of pain causing immediate and intense cramping. She cleaned up, trimmed the strings long-ish, and removed the speculum. There was immediate relief once the speculum was gone, but I was left with horrible cramping. I spent the next 15min on the table trying to calm down and breathe normally (my hands were tingling and I was dizzying from hyperventilating). I sobbed quietly for a few minutes from the cramps before I was given two Motrin. I was very weak for an hour afterwards and had to sit in the lobby before I called a cab.

    The first four days were bright red bleeding, consistently, with horrible cramps and back pain. I was taking about 1200mg of ibuprofen/day, and even then, I would have such intense cramps that I would have to stop dead in my tracks and grab a hold of someone or something tightly for a minute until the pain would would pass. (I imagine this is what a bad contraction feels like. It’s typical of what the worst of my normal cramps feel like.) Then my period hit and the bleeding increased and cramping continued. The bleeding has been consistent for the past 7 days, heavy enough to require a tampon or thick pad, although not clotted, and occasionally mixed with a bit of vaginal mucus. I have reduced my ibuprofen intake to 2 pills, generally in the afternoons when the cramps hit. (I have bad cramps right now, in fact, and have to breathe through it like I’m giving birth.) I also have to be careful how I stand or sit, as putting weight on my left side brings on a major cramp.

    I am set for a follow up in 3 weeks so the doctor can check the placement. In the meantime, I think it is safe to say I won’t be having sex any time soon. The pain is intense, so the idea of adding anything else into that mix is not appealing. I am going to give this 4 months to see if the pain dissipates. I am hoping it is all worth it.

    Posted by Meredith | March 16, 2014, 4:58 pm
    • Update: I am now on my third month with Mirena. I get my period every 30 days now and it lasts for a week at a time, but requires just a panty liner (no tampon). I get bar cramping for one day prior to my period and light cramping on the day of ovulation, but otherwise I am fine. The bleeding itself keeps getting lighter and is never clotted. In between, however, I have had very light brown spotting nearly every day. I would say I have had maybe two days without any bleeding at all since insertion. It is all getting better each month, though. I am hoping the period goes away entirely. I am not sure if 7 days of light bleeding and minor cramps is better than two days or heavy bleeding and painful cramps. Either way, I feel like there is a light at the end of the tunnel which I didn’t see when I was in so much pain during the first few weeks.

      Posted by Meredith | May 15, 2014, 7:16 am
  38. Is it normal to still have your period after having 14 days insert from the mirena iud

    Posted by jessenia gonzalez | April 3, 2014, 7:05 pm
  39. Is it still normal to have your period after having 14 days of the mirena iud

    Posted by jessenia gonzalez | April 3, 2014, 10:58 pm
  40. I am 18 years old and haven’t had any kids. I had my Mirena inserted exactly two weeks ago on April 30th 2014, the second day after my period started. The pain was pretty bad but I got through it. I was given numbing medicine before my doctor inserted the Mirena.
    It is now May 14th 2014 and I am losing what little patience I have ever had. I HAVEN’T STOPPED BLEEDING. Some days the blood would be more brown and light. Then it’s like a period all over again and it’s on and off. I also still get cramps. Less than the first week, but I usually have to take two ibuprofen every other day or every few days.
    I’m very irritable, probably because I’ve been bleeding for two weeks, haven’t been able to have sex, and been tired from all the pills I take. I was told (by my dad’s girlfriend) to ride it out for a few weeks to see what happens.
    And seeing as how every woman is different and is affected differently, I have no sodding idea what I’m going to do if I keep bleeding for 30 days.

    Posted by Tiffany | May 14, 2014, 7:20 pm
    • I was told to keep waiting it out. I still have unregulated bleeding. Its been since Sept. But this is my second one. The first I had about three weeks of bleeding, then five years no blood at all. This time, I have had bleeding up to right weeks straight. Its been rough. Especially because my fiances phobia of blood. Lol. But it seems to have finally calmed down. I just keep praying the next four years will be no bleeding again. If it is, it will be all worth it. Keep waiting it out. Even a year. I know it’s rough. But trust me, even a few years of light to no bleeding and barely chance of pregnancy is so sorry it. The shot makes you bloaded and chances of break thru bleeding that is so bad you might as well stay on the toliet. Pill, we all can forget to take. Stick it out. Good luck

      Posted by dmdm4444 | May 15, 2014, 5:50 am
    • Sorry, new phone, autocorrect sucks. Bleeding up to eight weeks straight. Try to stick it out.

      Posted by dmdm4444 | May 15, 2014, 5:53 am
      • Thank you for your response and information. My bleeding has gotten less and less to the point where I can have sex on a good day. Problem is I get bad cramping afterwards. I hope that’s temporary.

        Posted by Tiffany | June 27, 2014, 7:20 pm
  41. I got my mirena may 6 so almost a month now . And I spotted a day at first and stop started bleeding and cramping really bad and have been for about twelve days now. Im not sure if this is normal . I thought my periods were suppose to be lighter/spotting if any???

    Posted by Alexis Avery | May 22, 2014, 5:13 pm
  42. Ok, so has anyone had it for 6 months or more? I had mine placed Dec 6, 2013 and I am still bleeding. I went to the dr once and she said to hang in there since it is lighter. But I have this for heavy periods not birth control. I had my 3 kids and had my tubes tied i am doing this to stop the heavy bleeding. I was going through super plus tampons every 30 minutes for 15 days then normal periods for another 15 days. Yes the flow is lighter BUT not consistent at all! I am going on a vacation in 3 weeks and how am I to plan when I will be in Mexico swimming and such. I am so frustrated. Any suggestions.

    Posted by Kelley Kocher | June 25, 2014, 2:29 pm
    • I’ve had the mirena for 10 months. I got it for heavy bleeding as well. It’s getting less each month. But my period is still un reliable like it used to be. I didn’t have a period in April and May then had a 4 day period this month with 2 heavier days. But it’s not as heavy as it used to be. I used to have a 28- day cycle with 8- day periods. With at least 4- days gushing periods. Every time I stood up it’d gush! I don’t regret getting the mirena. It’s getting better each month.

      Posted by kirkbri2 Brianna | June 26, 2014, 10:00 am
    • Hi kelley. I’m in the same boat as you. I had mine inserted on november 24, 2013. I am still bleeding. I have probably had three days total without any spotting or bleeding. My periods themselves are so weird. Light flow to almost nothing, then medium flow to nothing for half a day, then heavy for three days, then nothing for half a day and then I think I’m done and it comes back!!!! I emailed my doc back in april and she told me to hang in there, but this is ridiculous. I’m just not sure if I should try to wait for the year mark or just have it taken out. I forgot to mention that I have moderate acne now too which I really don’t like. I just got back from vacation at the beach which I didn’t even swim in because I can’t wear tampons since I had kids. So not fun to be on vacation and you can’t even swim with your kids. What the heck do we do?

      Posted by jaime cuddeback | June 30, 2014, 7:21 pm
  43. I am on Mirena #2 with my first I had no trouble at all regular periods no cramps or random spotting. This one on the other hand is different…Although my cramps and bleeding have eased signifigantly, my periods are crazy…I have had it since Jan 2014 I never know what’s coming…Some times I have 1 or 2 or I’ve even had a 3rd period in 1 month and this month I don’t have 1 at all. I am aware that it’s possible periods may stop. But is it normal just to skip one or should I expect no more…or be concerned?

    Posted by Amanda | July 25, 2014, 10:21 am
  44. I got the mirena inserted on April 18 well this is my 3rd month being on it. I got it July the 11th at first it was heavy now its just spotting. But I dont spot the whole day just a few times a day.
    When will it all stop?

    Posted by Jessica Estrada | July 25, 2014, 8:35 pm
  45. I’ve had my IUD for 2 years. First 6 months were wonderful! No period what so ever but the 7th month to present has been horrible!

    I started to spot during my period (no big deal, that was fine by me) but then I started getting a horrible and I mean horrible discharge, once that went away my periods got heavier and heavier (I haven’t had sex in the past 2 years so pregnancy is 100% out of the question) now my periods are every 19 days I can only wear a Super Plus tampon for about 2 1/2 hrs to 3 and then I’m over flowing. Last month it was horrible the worst it’s ever been, but now the really scary part is I’m late, checked my string and my IUD is going to fall out. I’m going to call my doctor in the morning and see if I can see him.

    Has anyone else had this type of problem?

    Posted by Kaylee | August 4, 2014, 11:29 pm

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Dr. Jen Gunter Explains Bleeding After Mirena IUD Insertion | Holy Hormones Journal - May 26, 2013

  2. Pingback: Society for Menstrual Cycle Research : » Setting Feminine Hygiene on Fire, Squats vs. Kegels, and More Weekend Links - June 1, 2013

  3. Pingback: What kind of bleeding could be expected following a Mirena IUS insertion? - Pers J RP - June 16, 2014

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