What is Nexplanon?
The Nexplanon contraceptive implant is a tiny, thin rod about the size of a matchstick. The implant releases hormones into a woman's body that prevents her from getting pregnant. A nurse or other medical professional inserts the device into the arm and it will prevent pregnancy for up to 5 years.
How Does it Work?
Nexplanon works in 2 ways:
- Progestin thickens the mucus on your cervix, which stops sperm from swimming through to your egg. When sperm can’t meet up with an egg, pregnancy can’t happen.
- Progestin can also stop eggs from leaving your ovaries (called ovulation), so there’s no egg to fertilize. When eggs aren’t released, you can’t get pregnant.
What's the Problem With Nexplanon?
Nexplanon and other similar contraceptives have been linked to life-threatening complications including ectopic pregnancy, blood clots, vascular damage, heart attack and deep vein thrombosis. Recent lawsuits allege that Merck failed to warn women the devices could increase the risk factors for these injuries.
Additionally, like other non-oral hormonal contraceptives, Nexplanon comes with a risk for blood clots like pulmonary embolism as much as 40%. These life-threatening clots can form in the legs, permanently damaging blood vessels and surrounding tissue.
Birth Control Implant Side Effects
Our lawyers are accepting potential lawsuits on behalf of women who suffered the following side effects after using Nexplanon:
- Heart attack / cardiac event
- Blood clot
- Pulmonary embolism
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
Nexplanon users may also have an increased risk of the following side effects:
- Vascular damage
- Pulmonary artery damage
- Device migration
- Stomach cramping/bloating
- Breast tenderness
- Hair loss
- Weight gain
- Vaginal irritation/discharge
Related Article: Signs and Symptoms of Perforated Uterus IUD
Nexplanon Blood Clot
The most dangerous side effects of Nexplanon are related to blood clots. If a blood clot forms in the veins and breaks off, it can lead to other life-threatening conditions, including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.
Deep vein thrombosis occurs when a blood clot forms in one of the body’s main veins, usually in the legs. If that blood clot breaks off and travels to the lungs, it is called pulmonary embolism.
Blood clots can be dangerous if not treated and can lead to heart attack, stroke and even death.
What's the Difference Between Nexplanon and Implanon?
Implanon and Nexplanon are arm implant medical devices. The Nexplanon implant replaced the Implanon implant in October 2010.
There is no major difference in the way the two implants work or their effectiveness. Both are small toothpick-sized plastic rods that are implanted subdermally on the inside of your non-dominant upper arm. Both implants contain the synthetic progestin hormone, etonogestrel.
The only difference between Implanon and Nexplanon is the safety features that are in Nexplanon but not in Implanon. Nexplanon has two safety features designed to ensure proper insertion and prevent heart attack / cardiac event.
Which Other Types of Birth Control Have Been Linked to Blood Clots?
Proper Medical Safety Procedures for Nexplanon Removal
The Nexplanon implant is a long-term birth control method, as it works as a contraceptive for a period of 3 years. After three years, the birth control implant should be removed or replaced with a new one depending on whether one wishes to become pregnant or not.
Before starting the removal procedure, the medical practitioner or healthcare provider must read the instructions carefully and study the patient card well. It is important to verify the exact location of the implant in the arm by palpation. Before removal, it must be confirmed if the woman has any allergies to the antiseptic to be used or not.
Like insertion, the removal procedure of the Nexplanon birth control implant requires care and attention. Equally important is the care post removal. Once the implant is removed, from whichever method, it is important to not neglect the incision area are read the signs if any, the body gives post the removal procedure.
Once the implant is removed, there is no protection against pregnancy. Women are advised to use other methods of birth control like contraceptive pills or condoms if they do not want to get pregnant. One should use a back-up method for the first seven days post removal.
After the Nexplanon implant is removed, it is required that one watches for some signs of warning. There may be some numbness in the arm for a few days. As the numbness wears off, one may experience soreness for a day or two. During this period, over-the-counter pain relievers can be taken to relieve the pain. Cold packs also help in curbing swelling and pain.
Nexplanon Health Risk Studies
A recent study from Denmark published in the British Medical Journal found increased risks of blood clots for women who use nearly all types of non-oral hormonal contraceptives, including contraceptive implants such as Nexplanon. The researchers found a 40% increased risk of blood clots.
The researchers analyzed the risk of blood clots and other thrombolic events in Danish women between the ages of 15-49, from 2001 to 2010. The women were not pregnant and had no history of blood clots or cancer.
The researchers found that the only non-oral hormonal contraceptive that was not associated with an increased risk of blood clots was the IUD (uterine implant). Subcutaneous implants were associated with a 40% increased risk, skin patches were associated with a 7.9-fold increased risk of blood clotting, and vaginal ring devices were associated with a 6.5-fold increased risk.
South Carolina Woman Awarded 6-Figure Payout in Nexplanon Lawsuit
Court documents show a Beaufort County woman received more than a half-million dollars after suing over what she claimed should have been a simple medical procedure.
The woman’s lawsuit claimed someone at Beaufort Clinic inserted a Nexplanon implant into her arm in January 2014.
But the woman claimed the device was improperly placed, which caused her to make several visits to the Regional Medical Center where the implant was finally removed.
The suit states she was left with nerve damage in her arm, ultimately resulting in a permanent injury.
A list of payouts from the South Carolina Insurance Reserve Fund states the case ended in a $600,000 settlement.
See all defective medical devices litigations we've taken on.