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Paragard self removal at home

Most everything you will find online if you google "IUD self-removal" are people sternly warning you not to attempt it at home, better safe than sorry, etc. etc.  Well, some people are determined to remove their IUD themselves, and I was one of them.  So by way of disclaimer, I am not a doctor, and I am not recommending anyone try this at home.  Rather, I am sharing my experience because some of you out there will do this anyway, and my experience might help you.  I have always been able to very easily feel and grasp my strings.  I half-seriously attempted removing my IUD a few times while I wasn't on my period, but it didn't come out super easily, and I was chicken and gave up.  Well, my period started yesterday, so tonight, I squatted on the bathroom floor, gave the strings a good tug, and it was out.  I felt zero pain.  It was easier than removing a tampon.  It's been a couple hours, and all I feel is relief.  So to any of you who have wondered if it's possible to remove your own IUD, it is, and it's quite honestly very simple.  I think the biggest danger would be if your IUD were embedded, but I would assume you would feel pain and know to stop.  Mine was no problem at all.

If you are considering doing this and would like to read more stories, I found this thread on the Baby Center website with over 200 comments, most of them people sharing their experience about successfully removing their Mirena or Paragard at home themselves.

Good luck.



( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 19th, 2011 05:11 am (UTC)
That's awesome that it worked for you. :)

I'd be interested to see similar stories in the comments, as well as stories with complications.
Dec. 19th, 2011 05:44 am (UTC)
I think somewhere in the science roundups that enismirdal does, there's a study covering self-removal.
Dec. 19th, 2011 08:24 pm (UTC)
Yup - here's the link. They don't look at it specifically in terms of surveying/monitoring users who attempt self-removal, but the paper itself does basically say, "We can't really see anything wrong with it really, although some people may have a cervical vasovagal response, which isn't very nice for them." (i.e. for some people, the trauma to their cervix on the way out causes them to faint).

The study basically looked at what people think of the idea of an IUD which is specifically recommended as being suitable for removal by the user. A lot of people found the idea a bit disconcerting but others thought it sounded cool. (It does to me. If my strings were longer and 5 years from now I felt I didn't want to replace my IUD for any reason, I'd totally be tempted to do it myself.)

Also, thanks for the reminder - I owe iud_divas another roundup. Been putting it off because November was really quite science-wise, but some new stuff's come out in the last week which is kind of exciting.
Dec. 19th, 2011 08:31 pm (UTC)
Thanks for digging that up!
I would totally be one of the fainters, but it's good to know that it seems logically safe.

Take your time with the roundups. I know they are well-received, but they obviously take time! And this is a busy season for many. We'll appreciate it in January or February as much as (or more than) we'll enjoy it now.
Dec. 19th, 2011 08:32 pm (UTC)
And your anchor tag broke. Here's the link to the article.
Dec. 19th, 2011 08:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, bum grapes. Thanks for correcting it. Careless typing on my part!
Dec. 19th, 2011 03:34 pm (UTC)
Is there any particular reason that you decided to take it out (and why you wanted to do it yourself)? If you don't want to answer, that's cool.
Dec. 19th, 2011 08:43 pm (UTC)
I took it out because, even though I think it's a million times better than being on the pill, it does have it's drawbacks, and I've decided to try barrier methods/fertility awareness method for a while before starting a family. As far as why I removed it myself - I hate doctors and currently have high-deductible health insurance. I've seen a video of iud removal online, and after doing more research, I though I'd give it a shot before hassling with making time and paying to go have a doctor do it.
Dec. 20th, 2011 04:25 am (UTC)
I can't speak for the OP, but I ended up nearly removing my (partially expelling) second IUD at home because I noticed it late on a Friday evening. I couldn't get a hold of my regular provider, the urgent care facilities in my town didn't remove IUDs, and I didn't feel like it warranted a trip to the town's only ER (not to mention the ER visit costing more than I could afford for a non-life-threatening situation).

I received a fair bit of advice saying that while the safest option is certainly to go to a health care professional -- both because they have more experience with IUD removal and because they have better visibility and angle for the removal -- practically, it's a fairly uncomplicated procedure that essentially involves a gentle but steady pressure on the strings. I ended up being too timid to try it fully for myself, but I can see where, in a lot of situations, it would be a reasonable choice.
Dec. 20th, 2011 05:08 am (UTC)
insert= hard; removal= EASY
The first paragard I got was rejected by my uterus with no pain...it was sticking half way out and the planned parenthood people didn't think it was enough of an emergency to bump up my appointment for removal. I waited the three days and when I got there they were skeptical that it was half-way out. When the clinician saw it sticking out he said, "oh yeah...there it is." He tugged and it was done.

I wanted to like the UID so I got another. This time involved tons and tons of pain. I haven't slept well in three weeks because of the insane cramps, bleeding and general pelvic pain--not to mention bowel problems related to the heavy amounts of ibuprofen I had to take. SO I TOOK IT OUT MYSELF, AND IT WAS AWESOME! It was way easy. I found the strings, I barely pulled and it just slid out. I would even say that it is more difficult to take out your diva cup or tampon than it is to remove the IUD. It's only been a couple of hours and my cramps are GONE...YES! THEY ARE GONE I AM SO HAPPY.
Dec. 20th, 2011 05:40 am (UTC)
Re: insert= hard; removal= EASY
Good for you - and having used both tampons (yuck) and a Divacup (which I adore), I would have to agree. Towards the end, I was so sick of the IUD, I was getting pretty careless about removing my Divacup and possibly catching the strings. I am honestly surprised I didn't pull the IUD out now that I know how easily it can come out.
Jan. 9th, 2012 12:13 am (UTC)
I totally get why you would opt for self removal. I partially expelled an IUD and when I went to the dr to get it removed, it took like 2 seconds. I went to pay the bill and it was $120. I said, "Isn't my insurance going to pay for some of that?" The secretary said, "They did--without insurance it would have been $560." I felt like they were just charging so much because they knew that they could.
Feb. 23rd, 2013 01:00 am (UTC)
My Paragard broke when I removed it!I removed my Paragard IUD last night at home (after Planned Parenthood wanted $120 to get it removed). It did hurt, but not as bad as when it was inserted. There was a teensy amount of blood, but no biggie. But...when it came out, one arm had broken off, so I was left with a little L shape, instead of a T. Bummer. Not really painful, but kinda scary to have a loose piece of sharp plastic in my womb. I called Planned Parenthood and they insisted I come in. I spent all afternoon in the waiting room, but when the PA finally came in the room, the first thing she said was "I don't think I can help you." She said I'd need laproscopic (sp?) surgery to have the piece identified and removed, and so referred me out to a number of doctors on a list, none of whom called me back. And it's Friday, so since no one called me back in a timely fashion, now EVERYONE is closed and I don't have insurance. (On a side note: why is it that everyone in the "healthcare" industry seem to be such a bunch of incompetent jerks? What gives?!)
What to do?! I'm REALLY worried the piece will perforate my uterus and I could lose my chance to have kids...but one trip to the ER will be about 10 grand...) Does anyone have any experience with this? And please, no smug troll answers...if you've got advice, please come from real experience. I'm frazzled enough already.

Edited at 2013-02-23 02:06 am (UTC)
Feb. 23rd, 2013 05:40 pm (UTC)
The broken piece came out! Last night after posting, I took a super hot bath, then rubbed some lavender essential oil on my cervix (which is supposed to dilate it), went to sleep, and when I woke up, I decided to do a little self-pleasuring with just fingers (wouldn't want to jam anything up there that could push the piece further in!) while concentrating on bringing happy feelings to my womb, and when I was done, I reached up and felt the broken piece sticking out of my cervix!!!! I was able to just kinda paw it out.
Sooo...while my story was a bit more complicated than some others out there, I'm still happy I did this myself. It sucks that the Planned Parenthood PA was so negative toward me (like she thought I deserved this for bypassing their $120 fee), and that she acted like she was sure the piece was embedded in my uterine wall. Well, it sure doesn't seem like it was embedded. I think it just broke off while going through the tight cervical passage.
Those Paragards look pretty flimsy, and frankly the quality of the plastic seemed so poor that I'm surprised both arms didn't break off. After my man examined the two pieces, he shook his head and said that he'd never recommend an IUD to anyone.
Anyway, I know there are good experiences out there, but I just wanted to share my story so that more ladies would be informed of what can go wrong, and what you might want to try if you "lose" a piece during removal.
May. 31st, 2013 03:53 am (UTC)
Thanks for this information. My doctor attempted to remove my IUD on Tuesday and I had the same problem with it breaking. He said in 20 years he had never seen or heard of one breaking. The piece is still inside my uterus at this point, and they think it might be "slightly embedded" after doing an ultrasound. The biggest bummer is that they are planning to do what sounds like a nightmarish procedure to get it out -- replete with cervical dilation meds, scopes and probably pokey metal things. I think I might try this bathtub idea instead -- or hope for the best with my upcoming menses.

But currently have pretty frayed nerves.
sachet woolfolk
Dec. 8th, 2013 06:38 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad I found this post I've had my iud for 1 year and I was tired of continuously getting infections plus the cramping but every time I called to have it removed they would call me back to reschedule so finally today on day 3 of my cycle I felt for the strings and pulled it came right out it was so easy and it didn't hurt I'm so relieved hope things go back to normal
Maria Castillo
May. 7th, 2014 06:05 pm (UTC)
>I have paraguard ny bf tried pulling it out but it hurt probably the same it was inserted i just couldnt do it is it normal to have pain with paraguard self removed
Deiona Sanders
May. 28th, 2014 07:32 pm (UTC)
Iv'e Had Mine For About A Week Now & I Just Really Want To Take It Out Anyone Think It's Too Early.?
Martisha Perry
Jan. 6th, 2016 04:36 am (UTC)
I did it and it didn't hurt!
I removed my paragard and made a video for other women. Insurance Deductible started over Jan I freaked out because I realized I was having frequent bloating and pain along with other horrific symptoms every month before my cycle and I removed it myself. Heres a link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dr4ToNb8sOk Please like and share!
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )