Spotlight On: Contraception… The Bar or Contraceptive Implant: Part 2 8 years ago

Spotlight On: Contraception… The Bar or Contraceptive Implant: Part 2

Contraception and its many different forms are a talking point for women across the country. With so many different types on the market, coupled with the fact that every woman’s body is different, we take a closer look at all the options that are available to you. 

This week we again focus on the Bar or Contraceptive Implant in the second part of our two-part feature.


Last week, we explained all the basic facts that you need to know about the implant including how it works and how effective it is.

Now, we take a closer look at the Contraceptive Implant.


What are the Advantages?


The Implant is very effective, indeed it is one of the best forms of contraception at preventing unwanted pregnancy. For most women it will make their periods less painful.

It is safer to use in a lot of conditions where the Combined Pill cannot be used, for example with women who are breastfeeding, smokers and women who suffer from migraine with aura.

Perhaps best of all, it does not require you to remember to take a tablet every day.

Are there side-effects?


Like any hormonal contraceptive, there can be side effects with the Implant. For most women, these are transient and settle after six months of using the Implant. Also, in the first year of use, the implant can affect your periods. It may cause irregular bleeding, and up to 20% of women will have no bleeding at all with the Implant.

It may also cause fluid retention and acne. However for many women, their acne actually improves with the Implant. It is not associated with mood disturbances or headaches.


As a small cut is made in the skin when the implant is inserted, there is a small risk of getting a wound infection, and the area around where the implant is inserted may be bruised and sore for a few days.


Most of the side effects settle after a few months, however, if you do develop troublesome bleeding, especially if you are bleeding after sex or bleeding in between periods, make sure and get checked by your doctor.

Will it make me fat?

No, there is no association between the Implant and weight gain.

Will it affect my fertility?

No the Implant is reversible, this means that once it is taken out your fertility should return to normal very quickly. There is usually no delay in getting pregnant after getting the Implant removed, so if you do not want to become pregnant, make sure to use alternative contraception immediately!


Will the Implant protect me from STIs?

No, the implant does not protect you from contracting an STI so it is important to always use condoms to protect against this.

The More Pill-Popping The Better You can really have too much of a good thing. Check if antibiotics are really needed for your condition. Sometimes, infections will easily clear up by themselves. Treatment for pain relief may be all that’s needed. Too many antibiotics can lower your body’s immune system to illness.

Is the Implant suitable for everyone?

It is suitable for most people, however, there are certain medications that interfere with how effective it is, so it is important that the doctor knows about all of the medications you are on including any herbal or over -the-counter medications. Also if you have had breast cancer or liver disease, the Implant may not be suitable for you.

Is it hard to get it taken out?

To get the implant taken out, a local anaesthetic is injected into the skin once again. A small cut is made in the skin and the implant is removed. Sometimes scar tissue surrounding the implant make it slippery and difficult to take out, so occasionally it will take up to 30 minutes to remove the implant. It may also be difficult to remove if it has moved slightly into a deeper position. You will have a very small scar usually as a result of this procedure.