If you have been looking for a permanent birth control method that doesn’t involve surgery or hormone treatments, Essure could be the perfect procedure for you.
Essure is a permanent sterilization procedure that is both 100% surgery- and hormone-free. The end result is the permanent blockage of your fallopian tubes, which means that viable sperm no longer have access to your eggs.
What is Essure?
Essure is a non-surgical procedure that uses access to your fallopian tubes through your vagina and cervix. Using a small catheter, your doctor will follow the natural pathways of your body to place a small barrier, shaped like a tiny spring, into your fallopian tubes. This barrier is made from the same safe materials used for heart stents and numerous other medical procedures. Once the coils have been safely inserted into your fallopian tubes, your body begins to form scar tissue around the barriers. After three months, your fallopian tubes should be completely blocked, which prevents you from conceiving. If you’re wondering about the cost, as of August 2012, most insurance companies cover the entire procedure due to the Women’s Preventive Services provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
How Long Does the Essure Procedure Take?
The procedure can be done right inside a doctor’s office in well under an hour. In most cases, it takes about 10 to 20 minutes to correctly insert the barrier. You may experience slight discomfort, spotting, and/or discharge for the first day or two, but you should be able to return to your normal activities within a day.
PLEASE NOTE: It takes the average body approximately three months for complete fallopian blockage – aka permanent sterilization – to be complete. You must use other form(s) of birth control until you have been given the go ahead by your doctor that the fallopian tubes are blocked. Failure to do so can result in an unwanted pregnancy. The blockage will be confirmed using a special test called a hysterosalpingogram. The test uses a dye that is released into your uterus and then viewed by your doctor on an X-Ray. This will show whether or not your blockages are complete. Once your doctor has confirmed that your fallopian tubes are completely blocked, your Essure insertions will serve as a permanent form of birth control, and you will no longer require other birth control methods to prevent pregnancy. Women who are sexually active in non-monogamous partnerships, or suspect their partners are not monogamous, should still use condoms to avoid contracting an STD. Essure is a form of birth control, it is not a form of STD prevention.
How do I Know if Essure is Right For Me?
You should only consider using permanent birth control if you are 100% sure you do not want any more children. This is a permanent procedure and cannot be reversed. Here are some of the questions you should ask yourself before talking to you OB/GYN or Midwife about pursuing permanent birth control procedures:
• Am I 100% sure I do not want to have another baby?
• Has temporary contraception become a bother for me and/or my partner?
• Do I experience negative side effects from hormonal contraceptives?
• Am I wary about using hormonal contraceptives for a long period of time?
• Is my partner considering a vasectomy?
• Have I been considering the idea of a tubal ligation?
If any of these questions resonate with you, make an appointment with Overlake OB/GYN to discuss whether or not Essure is the best choice of permanent birth control for you.