Period pain not made worse by copper IUD

May 7, 2013, University of Gothenburg

Using a copper intrauterine device (IUD), or coil, does not exacerbate period pain, reveals a study where researchers from the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, followed 2,100 women for 30 years.

Previous scientific studies have suggested that who use a copper IUD for suffer from worse period pain, but a study at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, that followed 2,100 women over a 30-year period shows that this is not the case.

In the study, 19-year-olds born in 1962, 1972 and 1982 were asked questions about their height, weight, pregnancies, children, period pain and contraception. The latest results, published in the leading journal Human Reproduction, reveal that women who use a copper IUD do not suffer from worse period pain than women who use other non-hormonal contraceptives (such as ) or no contraception at all, while women who use a hormonal IUD or the combined pill and those who have given birth experience milder period pain.

"Research into period pain is sorely needed," says researcher Ingela Lindh from the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg. "Lowering the number of women who suffer from period pain will bring down absence from work and school and reduce the consumption of painkillers."

Lindh says the new study provides new and valuable information about when an IUD should be considered, for both and users:

"Women often have incorrect information about how different forms of contraception affect period pain."

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