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Advantages and Disadvantages of the Hormonal Implant for Birth Control

The following table lists the advantages and disadvantages of using the Implanon implant birth control method.

Deciding about hormonal implants

Consideration

Hormone implant (Implanon)

Advantages

  • Provides extremely effective birth control for 3 years
  • Does not require interruption of foreplay or intercourse
  • Safe to use while breast-feeding
  • Can be used by women who should not take estrogen
  • Reduces cramps and pain at ovulation
  • Less menstrual bleeding overall
  • Can be used by smokers over age 35
  • Rapid return to fertility following removal

Disadvantages

  • Unpredictable and irregular menstrual bleeding
  • Must be inserted and removed by a trained health professional
  • May cause menstrual periods to stop or be very light
  • Does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases or HIV
  • May cause headaches
By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Last Revised June 28, 2011

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: June 28, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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