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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Not Where It Should Be..

3D image of my uterus and my displaced/embedded IUD. Fun times.
My IUD, that is. The ParaGard has failed me. I've had it only since June 2012, and it's malpositioned. After months of heavy, heavy periods lasting about 10 days or more, and bad cramps, I finally listened to Matt and went to see a doctor. She said that the ParaGard is known to cause heavier, longer periods, and that is most likely the cause of my issues. But just to make sure, she wanted to get an ultrasound done to check my uterus and make sure there isn't an underlying problem. I was on the fence about getting it done, because I had (briefly) looked at my uterus a couple months ago, and everything seemed fine. Of course, I'm a know-it-all when it comes to this stuff. Plus, my facility just started collecting deductibles upfront, prior to doing the exams. So I would have to pay a good amount of money to have my ultrasound done there. But it would be cheaper than getting it done at my GYN office - plus, I don't know who reads them at the doctor's office. At least if I get it done in my department, I know our docs will look at it.

So I went ahead and scheduled the ultrasound, and had blood work done for a CBC and thyroid levels. I spoke to a coworker who deals with insurance and deductibles, and she said it would be fine if I brought in whatever I could for the deductible. I'll most likely get a bill for the rest, but that's fine.

Despite what I thought, it wasn't weird having my ultrasound done by a coworker. I was able to watch too, which I liked. Long story short, my ParaGard is low in my uterus, and the "T" arms look to be embedded in the myometrium of my uterus. IUD's are supposed to be contained within the endometrium - which is the lining of the uterus. Outside the lining, is the myometrium. Fun times. I asked to have one of the docs look at it, and he dictated the report as that. And yes, I followed the HIPAA rules, and signed a release for my images and report.

So yesterday, my NP called me and told me that the IUD is not where it should be, and that it has to be removed. She also said that I'm not protected, and need to use a backup form of protection. Say what!? Who knows how long this thing has been out of place for, and how long I've been "unprotected" for. So of course, I'm terrified that I'm pregnant. My mind starts racing about the what-ifs. Fortunately, I'm due to get my period in the next couple of days, so hopefully it comes. Unfortunately, this IUD could have been displaced a few weeks ago when I was ovulating.

My mind also starts racing about the removal of this thing. I'm legit terrified. The NP said that the report was very wordy, and therefore confusing (which I disagree, because I read it myself), so she showed it to a doctor in the practice. She said that they both agree that the IUD isn't perforated into the myometrium, and the removal should go easily. Umm, ok. I know she's the NP, and I'm the patient, but she also hasn't seen the images. She only got the report. I hinted that I was afraid it was indeed sticking into the myometrium, and she said that we will just go ahead with the removal, and go from there. I hope she's right, because if she goes to yank that thing out, and it hurts like hell, she'll certainly know about it. I hate to sound nasty and like a know-it-all, but even the Radiologist who looked at my images agrees it's sticking into my uterus. Oh well, I guess we'll see on Monday.

After Googling "ParaGard malposition and pregnancy", as well as IUD removal, my nerves are on edge. I need to take my own advice, and stay away from Dr. Google. But I did learn the correct term for what's going on is "embedded". The IUD arms are embedded into my myometrium, not perforated. Perforated would be if they poked through my uterus entirely. I've read that the removal of an embedded IUD can be difficult. I'm really hoping my appointment goes smoothly on Monday.

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