Semin Reprod Med 2010; 28(2): 110-117
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1248135
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Contraceptive Implants

Raegan McDonald-Mosley1 , Anne E. Burke1
  • 1Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
29 March 2010 (online)


Implantable contraception has been extensively used worldwide. Implants are one of the most effective and reversible methods of contraception available. These devices may be particularly appropriate for certain populations of women, including women who cannot use estrogen-containing contraception. Implants are safe for use by women with many chronic medical problems. The newest implant, Implanon (Organon International, Oss, The Netherlands), is the only device currently available in the United States and was approved in 2006. It is registered for 3 years of pregnancy prevention. Contraceptive implants have failure rates similar to tubal ligation, and yet they are readily reversible with a return to fertility within days of removal. Moreover, these contraceptive devices can be safely placed in the immediate postpartum period, ensuring good contraceptive coverage for women who may be at risk for an unintended pregnancy. Irregular bleeding is a common side effect for all progestin-only contraceptive implants. Preinsertion counseling should address possible side effects, and treatment may be offered to women who experience prolonged or frequent bleeding.


Raegan McDonald-Mosley, M.D. , M.P.H. 

Clinical Instructor, Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

4940 Eastern Avenue, A Building, Baltimore, Maryland 21224