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"Copper Toxicity" and Vitamin Supplements

Hi everyone! I've been lurking here for a while, and it is part of what helped me decide to get an IUD. I'm 27, no kids/pregnancies, and had a Paragard inserted about two weeks ago. I really wanted to get away from the hormones because, like a lot of you, I didn't really like certain side effects (namely, I never wanted to have sex -- quite the effective birth control!). Anyway, insertion was painful, and had pretty bad cramps that night. Since then, I've had more minor cramps and spotting, but overall, I'm pretty pleased with my decision so far.

My question is: does anyone know if there is any validity to the idea of "copper toxicity," or the copper/zinc balance that I've read about when you have a copper IUD? Most of the information I've come across have just been message boards of women claiming that their copper IUD's caused them copper toxicity (which they claim caused them to be "crazy"), especially when paired with a multivitamin that contains copper. Others have mentioned it can create a copper/zinc imbalance and that zinc supplements are recommended. I kind of figure all of this is invalid/people blaming everything under the sun on their IUD, but this seems to be a great community, so I thought I'd see if anyone had any experiences or read any actual valid evidence on this? I do take a multivitamin that contains copper, so I guess I'm just wondering if I should consider switching.

On the topic -- I've also heard that Vitamin E can help alleviate the increased bleeding that's common with Paragard owners. Has anyone tried this?

Sorry if these answers are elsewhere!


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 16th, 2010 11:56 pm (UTC)
I don't know the answer to the copper question, but I remember reading somewhere else that the amount of copper released by Paragard is significantly less than the amount you'd get just from a normal diet but I don't remember where.

I uses Vitamin E successfully to manage the bleeding when I had a Paragard - my flow was less than pre-Paragard levels with it.

Here's details of one study on Vitamin E: http://bastyrcenter.org/content/view/1023/
Jul. 16th, 2010 11:57 pm (UTC)

Man I should spell check before I post!
Jul. 17th, 2010 07:49 am (UTC)
What dosage of vitamin E are you taking?
Jul. 17th, 2010 03:27 pm (UTC)
200 IU twice a day. Occasionally 3 times if it's a particularly heavy day.
Jul. 17th, 2010 04:43 am (UTC)
Your body does a fine job of eliminating small amounts of copper it doesn't need unless you have Wilson's disease, which is rare.

I'm not sure about vitamin E and bleeding, but it wouldn't hurt to try. if that's not cutting it, Ibuprofen has been found to reduce menstrual bleeding in most women.
Jul. 17th, 2010 06:42 am (UTC)
vit e
I'm on month two of vitamin E experimentation - it definitely decreased the amount of flow last month, am hoping for more this month.
(Deleted comment)
Jul. 21st, 2010 01:42 am (UTC)
Re: vit e
Hi! Glad to help. This month I've been taking 400 iu since I got PMS symptoms...I usually start getting symptoms about seven days before my period. So...we'll see how it goes this time. :> Keep us posted on how it goes for you?
Jul. 17th, 2010 05:15 pm (UTC)
I heard about the vitamin e thing too! I'm awful at taking pills (thank god for long-term birth control) so I haven't managed to do it well since I heard about it, though. I did notice my cramping got a little better the couple days I remembered to take it, but my period was ending anyway so it could've just been a coincidence =/

As far as the copper dosage, I've always heard the same thing kayanissa did, that it's less than you'd get in your daily diet and shouldn't really make a difference. I haven't noticed myself going crazy =)
Jul. 17th, 2010 06:09 pm (UTC)
Thanks to everyone for the responses! I'm going to officially brush off the copper thing as some ladies who went a little nutso for other reasons and wanted to blame their IUDs... especially since my normal diet doesn't contain the foods that are super high in copper (calf's liver, crimini mushrooms, turnip greens and molasses, if anyone was interested!).

As far as the vitamin e -- quick question for those of you who have used it -- do you take it all month (maybe in a lower dose) or just start taking it when your period comes?

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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