I’ve always been an advocate of women taking charge of their own bodies, which includes deciding when you want to become pregnant. For many years I was on an estrogen pill. After some time, I went on the mini-pill (progesterone) and thought it worked just fine. Minimal side-effects.
After having my LO, my brain was scattered. I knew that taking a pill every day was going to be more difficult. After doing some research, I elected to have Nexplanon put in. Nexplanon is a small, flexible rod inserted in the inside of your underarm by a healthcare professional. It is 99% effective, and has many of the same possible side-effects of a typical combination pill. The rod is good for 3 years, and most insurance companies cover the expensive cost (which ranges from $700-$900 for the rod, and $300 for each minor surgery.)
Insertion of the Nexplanon was quick, and mostly painless. My physician’s assistant numbed the area, and inserted Nexplanon with a small instrument. She then felt to make sure it was in the proper location, and bandaged it up. There was some soreness, and it bruised pretty badly.
I expected to have some irregular bleeding, but that ended up being a huge understatement. I had irregular and frequent bleeding nearly every day for about 4 months, when I finally elected to have the rod removed. After talking with a nurse practitioner, she advised that this happens with about 1 in 5 that have the Nexplanon put in. Crazy. So, not only was I dealing with insane postpartum hormones, but then this evil birth control rod of death just compounded everything tenfold.
The removal of the Nexplanon was bad. I mean, really bad. First, my nurse practitioner almost cut into my arm without numbing it. In reality, I would have been fine. I just gave birth to a human. But HELLO, let’s not. A nurse quickly stopped her, and she promptly numbed the area. Nexplanon had encapsulated in my arm, so she had to cut way more than what is typical, and it took nearly a half hour. I almost needed stitches (and in retrospect, probably should have had a few.) It’s been several months since the removal now, and I have a scar and some soreness in that spot still.
A quick Google search results in plenty of unhappy consumers that also elected to have Nexplanon removed.
I happily rejoined the birth control pill ranks.
**UPDATE: it’s been almost half a year since I had the Nexplanon removed. I have a half inch scar, raised above the skin, as well as fairly painful scar tissue. Hoping both the scar and pain will fade, but it really may take some time.**