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Contraceptive Implant
Fertility Gynaecology 


The Implanon is a contraceptive implant containing the hormone etonogestrel (a progesterone like hormone), commonly used in Australia. A contraceptive implant works in a similar way as an oral contraceptive pill. 

The Implanon is about 3-4 cm long and made of plastic. It is inserted under the skin in the upper arm above the elbow by a trained doctor or nurse. The implant then releases a steady amount of hormone that helps in preventing unwanted pregnancies for up to 3 years. The implanon needs to be replaced at the end of 3 years if the desire is to continue with contraception, which can be done by a trained healthcare professional.

How implanon works?

Implanon works by:

–       Preventing ovulation ( release of the egg from the follicle)

–       Thickens the mucus of the cervix so that a sperm may not gain entry 

Studies show implanon to have 96 percent effectiveness

Benefits and side effects of implantable contraception:

Implanon comes with its own advantages and disadvantages, given below,


–       Effective for up to 3 years.

–       Low cost contraception

–       No interference with sexual intercourse

–       Can be used in people who have difficulty remembering 


–       Headache

–       Acne

–       Irregular periods, but lighter

Implanon does not affect fertility once removed. Fertility usually comes back to normal within a month or two.

Implanon is recommended in women who have difficulty remembering taking OCP’s every day, want a long lasting contraceptive method, cannot use estrogen and have contraindications to use of an intra-uterine device (IUD). 

Contraindications to implanon use:

Implanon is contraindicated if:

–       History of liver disease

–       History of irregular periods

–       History of blood clots

–       Contraindications to progesterone use

Implanon is usually put under a local anesthetic and its removal is similar with a small incision given under local anesthesia and it is removed. You can usually feel the implanon, and if you are not able to, always consult with your doctor.  On placement of implanon there might be some tenderness or bruising and a bandage might be advised up to 24 hours. It can also cause itching so avoiding scratching the implanon site is advised for up to a day or two.  

You can make an appointment with Dr Kenny on 1300 464 464.

This article is written to be informative and does not substitute seeking a professional consultation from a medical professional.

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