The world’s most effective birth control device 1 is helping women do battle against heavy menstrual bleeding and preventing hysterectomy in many women’s lives.
It’s a sad reality that countless women are still having hysterectomies to stop excessive monthly bleeding and menstrual pain. This, despite widespread medical opinion that it’s simply not necessary. Well recognised treatment guidelines specifically recommend that hysterectomy not be used as a first line treatment for Heavy Menstrual Bleeding (HMB) and pain, yet many thousands of women continue to undergo invasive and expensive hysterectomies each year2 on the advice of their doctors.
The emotional impact of this is hard to fathom. When our moms bled excessively month after month or suffered debilitating menstrual pain, they often resorted to hysterectomy - a huge step. Nowadays medical science provides alternatives, yet many people still believe that ‘The Big H’ is the only available option and, importantly, don’t question their doctors about alternatives or seek a second opinion.
So, what’s available other than Hysterectomy to treat heavy menstrual bleeding, discomfort and burdensome pain? Anti-inflammatory therapy has been shown to reduce HMB by approximately 20-25%, antifibrinolytic agents have shown a 40-50% reduction and oral contraceptives show a similar success rate.3 Women, though, are looking for an even more powerful, safe and effective intervention to support them in their ongoing monthly battle.
World's first Intra-uterine system
Enter one of the world’s most impressive innovations in women’s health to date. Something that offers effectiveness as a treatment to HMB 4 and significantly alters women’s determination over their own bodies. Just as the pill revolutionised womens lives in the 1960’s, a world first Intra-uterine System (IUS) called the MIRENA®is doing the same for their options on hysterectomy and is fighting HMB and menstrual pain more successfully than ever before.
Following two decades of development, and boasting numerous widely published scientific studies, the MIRENA® is already being used by millions of women worldwide as a contraceptive, to help obviate the estrogenic effects of Hormone Replacement Therapy and as a powerful, effective and safe approach to treating HMB as well as painful periods (dysmenorrhoea) .4
How it works
The MIRENA® is an IUS (Intra-uterine System) that is inserted into the uterus by a gynaecologist or doctor who has been trained in the procedure. No bigger than a match and more or less T-shaped, it releases levonorgestrel (a progestogen) into the body at an extremely low dose and at a constant rate. This makes it different to an IUD (Intra-uterine Device) such as a ‘coil’ which exerts its contraceptive effect mechanically, often making periods heavier, longer and sometimes more painful.
How does Merina help with excessive menstrual bleeding and pain?
The hormone released from MERINA ® is also key to fighting heavy menstrual bleeding and pain. It treats HMB by making periods shorter, lighter and less painful – often even stopping periods altogether. Through the release of the progestogen hormone the monthly thickening of the lining of the womb is reduced - therefore little or nothing develops to come away as a period. Don’t be alarmed though, this doesn’t mean you’ve reached menopause or are pregnant. It is simply a gentle hormonal hint to your body to help ease a painful physical problem whilst at the same time maintaining your natural hormone levels.
Local is lekker
The effect of the hormone in MERINA® is local (inside the womb) so one need not be worried about causing hormone imbalances from the effects of too much progestogen in the bloodstream. This is bourne out by the fact that most women using the MIRENA® still ovulate, proving that the amount of levonorgestrel absorbed into the blood stream is small, not even enough to suppress ovulation! Remember, it is the consistent, low dose release of the hormone that makes the MIRENA® effective.
Nothing is permanent
The MIRENA® is reversable and can be removed at any time. Once removed women can return to their childbearing state as fertility is not compromised – a key to MERINA’S® popularity.
Isn't it dangerous to stop my period?
'Isn’t it dangerous to stop my period?’ and ‘Where does my period go?’ are commonly asked questions.
No – it is not dangerous, unhealthy or abnormal!
The perception that a controlled cessation of a woman’s period is dangerous is a myth. The MIRENA® reduces the thickening of the lining of the womb. When this lining is not needed for its intended pupose i.e to support the growth of a foetus, this translates into menstrual bleeding. A period is, at face value, the clearing out of a monthly pregancy-preparation process, the removal of which poses no danger.
The MIRENA® is available through gynaecologists or general practitioners trained in the MIRENA insertion technique.
- (Mirena press release)