Contraceptive Implant

NUPAS > Abortion Care > Contraception > Contraceptive Implant

What Is A Contraceptive Implant

The most effective long-acting contraception.

The implant is a type of long-acting reversible contraception (LARC). It is a small flexible rod about the size of a hairgrip. It releases a hormone called progestogen. The implant is inserted under the skin in the upper arm. A local anaesthetic is used to numb the area first. The fitting takes only a few minutes and feels like having an injection. The type of implant offered at NUPAS is called Nexplanon.

Once it’s fitted, the implant works as contraception for 3 years. It can be taken out sooner if you choose. Fertility returns quickly once it’s removed. To take out the implant a doctor or nurse will make a tiny cut in your skin to gently remove it.

How does the implant work?

The implant slowly releases a hormone called progestogen into the bloodstream. It stops the body ovulating (releasing an egg). It thickens the cervical mucus (fluid at the neck of the womb) to stop sperm reaching an egg. It also thins the lining of the uterus (womb) to stop a fertilised egg attaching and growing.

When can I start using the implant?

The implant can be fitted immediately after an abortion. You'll be protected against pregnancy straight away.

Advantages, Disadvantages and Effectiveness

All contraception has different advantages, disadvantages and effectiveness. It is important to look at this when finding the right contraception for you.

What are the advantages of the implant?

Does not interrupt sex

Works for up to 3 years

You don’t have to remember to take it

Can be used when breastfeeding

Can cause periods to be lighter

Can reduce pain from periods

Can be used at any age

Can often be taken by people who cannot take oestrogen

What are the disadvantages of the implant?

Does not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

A small procedure is needed to fit and remove the implant

Not suitable for women using enzyme inducing drugs

What are the risks of the implant?

Possible temporary side effects of using the implant for the first few months include:

  • Headaches
  • Feeling sick (nausea)
  • Changes in mood
  • Changes in sex drive
  • Sore breasts

Other possible side effects include irregular bleeding (1 in 5 people) or periods stopping altogether. Some people find they start to get acne, or it makes their acne worse.

How effective is the implant?

The implant is the most effective contraception. It is over 99% effective. Less than 1 in 1,000 users will get pregnant in the first year of use.

What makes it less effective?

  • Some prescribed and complementary medicines

You can get advice on emergency contraception to prevent an unintended pregnancy.

Find out more about emergency contraception here.

Protection from STIs

The implant does not protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs). We recommend that you also use condoms to protect against STIs. We offer all our patients condoms to take away with them. Get in touch if you’d like advice on the different contraception options after an abortion.

Contraception options available at NUPAS

At your abortion appointment, we will discuss contraception options with you.

Fertility can come back as soon 5 days after an abortion. This means you could get pregnant again if contraception is not used. There are lots of methods of contraception to choose from so don’t be put off if the first type isn’t quite right for you.

Find out more about contraception options available at NUPAS.

Get in touch with NUPAS

Give us a call:

United Kingdom:
0333 004 6666

Republic of Ireland:
(01) 874 0097

0044 161 4872660

Our friendly team is here to take your call