Is an intrauterine device (IUD) safe to use while suffering from bacterial vaginosis

By | July 5, 2017

What is IUD? Intrauterine Device or IUD is a device inserted into the uterus to prevent pregnancy. IUD is the most effective contraceptive for women.
There are two types of IUD and five DFA approved brands available in the U.S. market. The two types of IUD are copper IUD and hormonal IUD.

The DFA approved copper IUD markets under the brand name ParaGard while the hormonal IUD markets under the brand names Mirena, Kyleena, Skyla and Liletta.

The copper IUD has a tiny piece of copper wrapped around it and does not contain hormones. The copper makes your fallopian tube produce a liquid that kills the sperm. Copper IUD can last up to twelve years.

The hormonal IUD contains the hormone progestin, which can be likened to progesterone hormone in our body. Hormonal IUD lasts between three to six years depending on which brand you take.

How does IUD work?

The IUD works by keeping the sperm cells from fertilizing the egg. If the sperm cell cannot fertilize the egg, pregnancy will not happen.

Sperm hates copper so if you are using copper IUD, it is almost impossible for the sperm to fertilize the egg.
The progestin hormone, on the other hand, can prevent pregnancy by blocking and trapping the sperm by thickening the mucus in your cervix or by stopping the eggs from leaving your ovary.
The best thing about using IUD is that it can last for many years but reversible. If later you are ready to get pregnant, you can have it removed by a doctor or nurse just as easily as you had it inserted.

Is IUD safe if you have bacterial vaginosis?

Bacterial vaginosis happens when there is an imbalance between the good bacteria and the bad bacteria residing in the vagina. There is a higher risk of imbalance if you have multiple sex partner, if you use cleansing agents for rinsing, or if by nature your body does not produce enough lactobacilli thus the bad bacteria outnumber the good bacteria in your vagina.

If you believe that using IUD will keep you safe from an infection that is a fallacy.

The IUD keeps you from getting pregnant; it does not keep you from getting infected with STDs or other vaginal infection.

Is it safe to use IUD if you are suffering from bacterial vaginosis?
The answer is yes.

Does IUD cause bacterial infection? Generally, the answer is no. It is not the device that causes the infection but the contamination caused by the insertion of the device that causes the infection.

It is best to have a medical diagnosis of bacterial vaginosis before an IUD insertion. The infection from your vagina can contaminate your uterine cavity during insertion and thus cause the infection to spread in your fallopian tube. The risk is minimal, about 0.97% and will only happen in the first 20 days after insertion1. Still, it is better to be safe than sorry.
If you acquire bacterial vaginosis after insertion of an IUD, it is likely transmitted sexually and not caused by the device.