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    What's the Best Birth Control?

    (continued)

    Sterilization Surgery for Men

    Type: Medical

    How it works: The tubes from the testes to other glands are blocked so the semen no longer has sperm.

    Pregnancies per 100 women:

    • Ideal use = less than 1
    • Typical use = less than 1

    How long it lasts: Ongoing

    STD protection? No

    Need to see a doctor? Yes

    Pros: One-time procedure. Only needs local anesthesia.

    Cons: Risks of pain, bleeding, and infection. Waiting period before it's effective. Not meant to be reversed.

    Implantable Rod

    Type: Hormonal

    How it works: Using a needle, a doctor sticks a matchstick-sized rod with progestin under the skin on your arm.

    Pregnancies per 100 women:

    • Ideal use = less than 1
    • Typical use = less than 1

    How long it lasts: Up to 3 years

    STD protection? No

    Need to see a doctor? Yes

    Pros: Long-term protection against pregnancy. Can be reversed easily if you want to become pregnant.

    Cons: May cause changes in your bleeding pattern and weight gain. Possible breast and stomach pain.

    Progestin IUD (Liletta, Mirena, Skyla)

    Type: Hormonal

    How it works: A small T-shaped device that has progestin goes into your uterus.

    Pregnancies per 100 women:

    • Ideal use = less than 1
    • Typical use = less than 1

    How long it lasts: Up to 3-5 years

    STD protection? No

    Need to see a doctor? Yes

    Pros: Nothing to do right before having sex. Once removed, it's possible to conceive. Can be used while breastfeeding. May cause lighter periods or no periods.

    Cons: May cause irregular periods, pain, or ovarian cysts. In unusual cases, you may become infertile or have pelvic inflammatory disease. In rare instances, the IUD may get stuck in or on your uterus or a cause serious infection.

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