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Having your IUD removed

Find out how to prepare to have your Intra Uterine Device (IUD) removed and what to expect. 

PREPARING TO HAVE YOUR IUD REMOVED 

There are lots of reasons you might choose to have your IUD removed.

If you're having it removed because you want to get pregnant, the better time for it to be removed is during your period or just after your period has finished. 

If you're having it removed and don’t want to become pregnant:

  • don't have sex (penis in vagina sex) in the previous seven days before you have your IUD removed, or
  • if you're having sex, use condoms in the previous seven days before you have your IUD removed, or
  • you may be able to start your new method of contraception before your IUD is removed.  

GETTING YOUR IUD CHANGED

If you're getting your IUD changed you must not have sex, or have used condoms each time you’ve had sex, in the previous seven days before your IUD is changed.

This is because, if you do have sex without a condom in the previous seven days before your IUD is changed and we're unable to put in a new IUD, there's a small risk that you could get pregnant.  

IF YOU THINK YOU MIGHT BE PREGNANT AND HAVE AN IUD 

Pregnancy is very rare with an IUD in place. If you do get pregnant, or think you might be pregnant with an IUD in place, see your nurse or doctor as soon as possible. There's no extra risk for your baby, but there is a risk of complication in the pregnancy.  

If you want to continue the pregnancy, it's better for your IUD to be removed to lower the risk of infection and miscarriage. This needs to be done early.  

HOW IS AN IUD REMOVED?

Don't try to remove the IUD yourself.

Removal of an IUD must be done by an experienced nurse or doctor. Removal of an IUD is generally a quick process and is usually less painful than having an IUD put in.

Removing your IUD will take about five to 10 minutes. The whole IUD appointment will take about 20 minutes.  

Your nurse or doctor will take out your IUD by putting a medical instrument (speculum) into your vagina and then using a little tool to grab the threads of the IUD to pull it out. This might be uncomfortable for a few seconds. You might have some light bleeding afterwards. 

Sometimes the IUD threads are not visible to the nurse or doctor. This can make taking your IUD out more difficult. You may need a scan to check if your IUD is still in place. 

WHAT DO I DO AFTER MY APPOINTMENT? 

Use pads (not tampons) for the first 48 hours. 

Use other contraception from before the IUD is removed if you’re having sex and don’t want to get pregnant. 

See a nurse or doctor if you have unusual pain, bleeding or discharge.  

CAN I GET PREGNANT AFTER MY IUD IS REMOVED?

Yes. You'll be able to get pregnant as soon as the IUD is taken out.

HOW DO I GET MY IUD Removed?

Make an appointment at Family Planning or talk to your nurse or doctor. 

Family Planning has clinics located throughout New Zealand. Use the clinic finder to find your nearest clinic.