Advantages and disadvantages of injectable contraceptives
This article describes about the advantages and disadvantages of Injectables contraceptives.
Injectable contraceptives are progesterone mainly depot medroxy prodesteone acetate (DMPA) and Norethisterone ethantate (NETO). In some countries for less failure rate these are combined with small amount or estrogen and given deep intramuscular once a month. To know in detail about them refer to
Injectable contraceptive : No tension for missing pills.
Though the development of injectable contraceptive pills have eased the women and the compliance has been improved but it has some advantages as well as disadvantages too which are enumerated below-
Advantage of injectable contraceptives
The advantages of injectable pills starts from a good compliance and the worry to miss pills is no more, thus there is good compliance and the added advantage is that the women is under regular medical supervision.
In can be given to a patient with sickle cell anemia where oral contraceptive is usually not recommended. It is also suitable for lactating women.
The side effects of lipids and carbohydrate metabolism is avoided as it contains no or very little estrogen and that too in special preparations like mesigyna, cyclofem etc. The other estrogenic side effects are also avoided.
While using injectable contraceptives the incidence of pelvic inflammatory diseases, ectopic pregnancies and functional ovarian cyst is low. If also protects from endometrial cancer.
Though the return of the fertility is a bit delayed and that too more with DMPA but more than 80% of woman concieve within 1 year after leaving the contraceptive measures.
Disadvantages of injectable contraceptives
There are few disadvantages of injectable contraceptive too and as it is injectable one, it cant be withdrawn, so these side effects of progesterone have to be tolerated till the progestogenic effect is over.
There may be a little weight gain, depression, a feeling of bloating and belching in the stomach, and pain can occur in the breast, but these effects are temporary and is reversed when the effect of injection is over.
There may be menstrual irregularity and even amenorrhoea in about 20 to 40% women at the end of one year with DMPA and NETO. There may be profuse bleeding in 1 to 2 % of cases.
As mentioned above there may be delay in return of fertility but most women concieve in 1 year after. In general fertility returns within 6 month in DMPA and within 3 month in NETO after the last injection.
When there is prolonged amenorrhea it may lead to osteopenia due to strong antiestrogenic effect of DMPA and it may lead to reduce bone mass density and may induce osteopenia.
Though injectable contraceptives may increase blood LDL level but neither it is contraindicated not have any adverse effect on blood pressure.
Note : Injectable contraceptives both DMPA and NETO are contraindicated in breast cancer.
Now a days there are contraceptive measures which is implanted below dermis of skin and is long acting upto3 to 5 years. To know more see
Dermal implants : Long term contraceptive measures.
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Chaitali Ray Chaudhuri (Datta)
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