41 answers

Your Thoughts on Tubal Ligation Vs. Vasectomy Vs. Mirena?

Hey Mommas:
My husband and I are expecting our second little boy in two weeks and would like to have an effort-free birth control option afterward, since we don't plan on having any more children (although I'd like to adopt a third...still need to see what 2 will be like, though! :-). Since my delivery will be via a planned c-section (per my doctor: "no VBAC"), my husband thought that it would be a great time for me to get my "tubes tied" since they're in there already. I tend to agree that IF I got a tubal, then that would be the time. However, I am worried about whether they are easy to reverse, should I want to do that in the future?

Since my husband is also open to a vasectomy (which I believe is less invasive and/or easy to reverse?), I asked my OB's nurse about the pros and cons of those two options.

That's when she mentioned Mirena as an option. In fact, she was practically raving about how wonderful of an option it is. But, I know that I've seen some bad things from you Mamas about Mirena-related issues!!

Knowing that it might be just a few bad experiences among thousands of good experiences, I thought I would ask this question about your experiences (good or bad) with any of these BC options.

Thanks!!!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

my mirena fell out after two months of solid bleeding. I know that's not supposed to happen, but it happened to me.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi D.,

Here are the link to the web site with the post tubal ligation syndrome hope it helps you to make an informative decision. I have opted out of tubal and am looking into something else. Spoke to a friend of mine who didn't do ANY research and has most of these symptoms.

http://www.tubal-reversal.net/post_tubal_ligation_syndrom...
http://retardedrugrat.wordpress.com/2006/06/14/post-tubal...
http://www.wdxcyber.com/nbleed9.htm
http://www.steadyhealth.com/post_tubal_ligation_syndrome_...
http://posttuballigationsyndrome.blogspot.com/
http://posttuballigationsyndrome.blogspot.com/ of all the links this is the most informative
http://womenshealth.about.com/cs/sterilization/a/steriliz...

I have been using Nuvaring for about 18 month. I haven't had any complications and Mirena seems to have quite a few.

More Answers

All of your choices are meant to be permanent. They can be reversed but the results are not gauranteed. The doctors tell you that you will not be able to have children again after the procedures. I think the easiest to reverse is the vasectomy according to my research. If you are already considering reversing them then they are not the options for you. Because you don't sound absolutely positive that you don't want anymore kids. You sound like you want a temporary solution in case you change your mind. I would highly consider another form of birth control that you can "reverse" or stop using and concieve. Consider your actions carefully as reversing these procedures doesn't guarantee that you will ever concieve again.
Good luck,
L.

1 mom found this helpful

my mirena fell out after two months of solid bleeding. I know that's not supposed to happen, but it happened to me.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi D.,

Here are the link to the web site with the post tubal ligation syndrome hope it helps you to make an informative decision. I have opted out of tubal and am looking into something else. Spoke to a friend of mine who didn't do ANY research and has most of these symptoms.

http://www.tubal-reversal.net/post_tubal_ligation_syndrom...
http://retardedrugrat.wordpress.com/2006/06/14/post-tubal...
http://www.wdxcyber.com/nbleed9.htm
http://www.steadyhealth.com/post_tubal_ligation_syndrome_...
http://posttuballigationsyndrome.blogspot.com/
http://posttuballigationsyndrome.blogspot.com/ of all the links this is the most informative
http://womenshealth.about.com/cs/sterilization/a/steriliz...

If you aren't 100% sure you don't want anymore children, I would NOT get your tubes tied or have dh get a vasectomy. They cannot always be reversed and insurance would not pay for it. I have heard a lot of women complain about problems with Mirena, specifically it getting displaced.

When/if you become sure you want a permanent option, I would opt for the vasectomy instead of the tubal. Some research I've done on tubal wasn't too positive. Vasectomy on the other hand seems to have hardly any side effects, long term. There is a risk of a persistent and recurrent ache in some men after the procedure though.

Congrats on your new little boy on the way. Two is definitley different and harder (at first) than one, but you get used to it!

I just had my second Mirena placed a couple weeks ago.I have had two negatives - it took a while for my body to adjust, so I had spotting for over a year. BUT, my body has always had a little trouble with hormones (finding the right Pill was a nightmare for me). The only other negative is not terribly bad - it was uncomfortable getting the seond one in (the one postpartum is not as uncomfortable) - discomfort getting it in, then cramping for a little while after, until the Advil took effect. But then after that - wonderful! Nothing to worry about for 5 years, and my periods are lighter than they ever were (kind of like spotting for 5 days). It takes one short visit to get it in, was covered under my insurance, and is completely reversible without surgery, which a vascectomy reversal would require (albeit it a brief surgery). I looked at the 10 year copper IUD too, but my doc said that with that I would have more period, more menstrual cramps. no thank you! In 5 years, I'll be back for my 3rd Mirena.

Well I had my tubes tied and it was not bad at all since I did have a c section also. If the Mirena is what I think it is that is what one of my friends used and she still got PG. I was told when I got my tubes tied that is was reversible but would not be an easy procedure to do. If your husband is open to the vasectomy I say go for it. But that's just my opinion.

Good luck and God bless you in what ever decision you make!

I have a Mirena that I now love. At first I hated it. Having it put it was a lot more painful than I was told it would be. I also had some bleeding for three months after that. I called my doctor asking if the bleeding was normal and was told some women bleed for up to six months after having it placed. I feel I was not well informed by my doctor. Now though I love it. I do not have a period and it is effort less. I do not have to remember to take a pill every day and it is good for up to five years. I am glad I got it

I don't believe that a Vasectomy is any easier to reverse than having your tubes tied. It is definitely less invasive. If you are even thinking that you might want to reversal of either you need to think of a different option. An IUD would probably be a better bet. I wouldn't attempt surgery that you want to reverse, because it might just not work.

Look into non surgical and but no maintenance forms of birth control.

Hello D.,

There are over 60 different types of BC out there. Please just don't limit yourself to the Mirena. Doctors office push a product on me because of the Rep that handles the product plus the office receives more money from your insurance company with the placement of the Mirena. A tubal just depending on the doctor, he cuts, ties and burns your tubes and no there will never be a chance of your ever getting pregnant again. A vasectomy is premant also. The doctor can reverse a vasectomy BUT the long you wait to do so, the lesser the chances are of you getting pregnant again. Good luck in your search.

A couple of questions to ask on the tubal ligation is 1.)whether it is reversible and 2.)how will TL impact your monthly cycle. My TL isn't/wasn't reversible and my cycle was very painful and heavy. The dr. did mention a little something about this but I didn't really investigate it. I wish I had. I ended up having an endometrail oblation a few years after the TL because of iron issues.

Hi D.,

Congrats on the new baby boy! I'm Pro Mirena. I've had my first one for about 18 months and I love it. I have not had ANY of the problems that the other posters mention. The only negative thing I experienced was the 3-6 month inital bleeding. I bled (lightly) for the entire first 6 months. Once that ended, I have not had a period in a year!

I also agree with the rest of the posters on avoiding the 2 permanent options. While you probably won't want another surgery (for the TL), your husband could always opt for the V later on if you try the Mirena and it's not for you...

Best of luck with your decision and your (almost) new addition!

Ligation and Vasectomies should be considered permanent. After doing some research about he Mirena I opted to forget it. With a ligation you can still get pregnant, I don't know how often it occurs but because your egg can't make it through your tube you end up with an ectopic pregnancy again something that was not worth the risk to me. My husband had a Vasectomy last November. He had some complications the first couple of weeks, when the doctor numbed him he hit a nerve and then one of the incisions became infected. He was a BIIIIIGGGGG baby and that nearly killed me. For me I had 4 kids only one with an epidural, and only then because they thought they were going to have to cut her out of me. I figured he dang well be able to take one for the team. Depending on how the Doctor bills if you have insurance the you may only have to pay your office copay, our Dr. billed as an out patient procedure and we had already met all of out deductibles for the year so it didn't cost us a penny. Even though My husbands experience wasn't a walk in the park in no ways does he regret it.

Hi D.! I have been in your position and know how you are feeling! I opted to have the Mirena and i love it! no more worries and no pills! it is a little uncomfortable when it is inserted, but the cramping goes away with some Advil! I was excited about the no periods, but my body likes the whole menstruation thing, so 1 year later and I still spot every month, but no more heavy periods! My doctor also warned me that one of the side effects was ovarian cysts, but informed me that they usually do not cause problems and they resolve themselves within a year! so good luck to you! hopefully this has been somewhat helpful! congratulations on a healthy prgenancy!
jess

I agree with some of the others. If you are not 100% sure you are done, then don't do the tubes or vasectomy. Mirena (although I have not used) is completely reversable. The likelyhood of the others to be reversed is a lot more difficult...if not impossible. So...I'd wait. If you do decide that you are done, then I would suggest the tubes if you are having a c-section. My OB said that they recommend vasectomies with people that have a vaginal birth and tubal ligation with those having c-sections. Hope that helps! Good look to you and Congrats on the soon-to-be new arrival!

You don't mention how old you are, because if you're still relatively young and you're not 100% sure you're done having children, then I would suggest you choose something less permanent. Neither tubal ligation or vasectomy are easy to reverse.

We had decided on only two, but at the age of 37 I had a change of heart which ultimately my husband (age 40) supported so we welcomed child #3 in 2007. But I opted against getting my tubes tied at that time, even though I knew I wouldn't be having any more children -- it was a mental thing, like I felt I would be less of a women if my child bearing ability was gone. So my husband got the vasectomy which is a simpler procedure anyway and caused him some pain/discomfort for only a couple of days.

Of your 3 options, 2 are invasive and the same procedure. Why would you think about getting either ligation reversed if neither of you want to "birth" more kids? I have the mirena IUC and it takes some adjusting, but I have not had any issues and I have not had a period in more than half the time I've had it (nearly a year). It is effective for 5 years and I forget that it's there.

A vasectomy is a tubal ligation for the vas deferens for your husband. So both are invasive...your fallopian tubes and his vas deferens. The mirena is the easiest of the 3 to reverse and least expensive.

Hi D.. I wish you the best in making the decision. You are on the right track by investigating and asking questions about what's best. Unfortunately, I didn't ask any questions prior to my tubal, just wanted it done 'cause it was convenient since I too had c-sections. I had no complications from the tubal or the surgery, BUT in the last 4 or 5 years (tubal was 6 1/2 years ago) I have noticed many different changes in my body and with my cycle that are unexplainable (in my opinion). For several years I attributed it to getting older, but...I'm only 33, not old enough to be having the problems that I'm having....so I have begun doing a little bit of research myself and have discovered something called PTLS (Post Tubal Ligation Sydrome). As you're doing your research, do a search on this term and read a bit about what many other women are experiencing after tubal ligations.....it may be that you and your husband will choose another alternative, as I'm sure you and he want you to be a healthy MOM. Blessings to you and yours and peace be unto you during your research! Happy Baby To Y'all!!!!

D.,
Honestly, I don't think you are ready to have your tubes tied or your husband have a vasectomy. If the question of reversal is in your head don't do it. I had my tubes tied after my 3rd child and wish now I didn't. I was think economics, we had 2 kid already and 3 counting my step-son, so 4 was plenty in my mind. There is a big split between them, last one was a surprise 9 year gap. Anyway, I kept asking my husband, he said it was my choice and I did it... I wish I wouldn't to this day, I could have had one more so our baby would have a sibling close to him in age. I've thought of the reversal, but it's expensive...
What I'm trying to say, in my opinion reading your question, you are not ready for one. I'd try some other form of birth control.
God Bless!

Ok I've had experience with both the Mirena and vasectomy. in between my two kids I had the Mirena and LOVED IT!!! I had NO period for 2 years. Sure there was a little discomfort when my doctor placed it in me, but my suggestion would be to take your pain medication 30 minutes before your appointment. this away you are already relaxed for the procedure. After we had my last child my husband desided to have a vasectomy. He said the worst part was the numbing at the begining and some discomfort a few days after. But was nothing he couldn't handle. Personally if you aren't ABSOLUTELY SURE you don't want any more kids go with the Mirana. Once you make the decision to have a Tubal ligation or if your hubby has a vasectomy isn't hard for both to have reversed and there are no promises you will even be able to have a child after all is said and done. Just pray about it and God will give you the answer.

Go to Mirena's website and read the research on it. I was on an ad research panel for them and have a lot of education on it. I would go with it if I could after my baby is born however I have had fibroids and ovarian cysts (from PCOS) and that puts me out as a candidate. The awesome thing about Mirena is that it's completely reversible without the expense of surgery and you don't sound as though either one of you is totally committed to being done having children. It gives you 5 years of time to research and decide what you want to do. Reversals are possible, I have a friend that is having her second reversal baby (her oldest are 15, 13 & 10 the 1st reversal baby is about 2 1/2) but it's another surgery expense. And after the reversal then you have to decide if you want to go through the ligation or vascetomy again.

I had the Mirena IUD after the birth of my second for the exact same reason. I liked it until I got pregnant while on it! I would ask lots of questions about what happens if you got pregnant. It was very traumatic for us...luckily we are well into our pregnancy problem free but having the iud made our risk of miscarriage 50-55% because I had to have it removed. If you leave it in, it increases your risk of second trimester still birth to about 60%. I never thought I would get pregnant on this thing and it really sucked! I wish I would have just taken the pill....then if you get pregnant, you quit taking the pill! I agree you should rethink the tubal or vascectomy because they are not that easy to reverse! Good luck in your decision!

D.,
I had my tubes tied with my second baby and I'll tell you this is not a decision to be made lightly. I KNEW I wasn't going to have any more children, but I still went through a type of grieving period - realizing that chapter of my life was closed. I think if you are already considering the reversibility of the different procedures, a tubal ligation is not the right choice for you.

M.

After my daughter was born (#3) my dh and I decided that we weren't going ot have any more kids. My last pregnancy was very difficult. I was all ready to get my tubes tied, but after my daughter was born, there were no OR's available for the procedure. We planned to do it 6 weeks later. Long story longer, :) DH decided that he would get the V instead of me having to go through an invasive procedure. He was sore for a few days, but no other side effects, very easy. AFTER all that I read a thread on here regarding tubals and how they can cause major problems - extra heavy bleeding, terrible cramps, nausea - and I had NO IDEA. Many women responded with the above issues.
I would say get the IUD first just to see how you do because you can always take that out. You can't fix problems related to a tubal.

HTH
L.

Hello D.,
One thing I ask.....if you don't "plan" on conceiving more children, why are you concerned about a reversal? If you are not totally certain about future children, maybe you should consider another form of birth control. I have not heard about Mirena, so I can't say anything about it. I can tell you from experience, before my 4th child was born, my husband had a vasectomy and about 6-8 weeks after her birth, I had a Tubal. Another concern of your doctor's might be your age and how many more years you have for childbearing. My doctor did not hesitate with my procedure, because at 24, I was having my 4th baby and we were certain that we were not going to have anymore children.

I guess your decision should be if you really do want to have more children....if so, let nature take its course.

If you are not planning to have any more children ... my first reaction is to tell you to get your tubes tied. COST SAVINGS and convenience are the key factors here - get your tubes tied after you deliver your baby via c-section. The docs are already there, anesthesia is already covered, the hospital OR is covered - it would be the most cost effective thing to do. And, your recovery is the same.

I delivered my 2nd baby via c-section (also because my doc did not recommend VBAC) and had my tubes tied then. No problems at all :)

Good luck!

Well, I can't really help you with the tubal/vasectomy issue, but I can tell you some things about my Mirena experience! My doctor really pushed me to get the IUD also....looking back I wonder if the doctors are getting a kickback for recommending them?! Anyway, I've had it in for two years and have had many health problems since. I have developed migraines that incapacitate me for days on end. I have horrible night sweats, wild weight swings...the list goes on. Anyway, I never had any of these problems before, so I'm starting to think that the IUD is to blame! Certainly research your options heavily before you proceed with this!

Hi D.!
If you aren't certain that you will be done having children...do mirena! I was on mirena for a year and a half before deciding to have number 3. (I got pregnant 2 weeks after getting it taken out...so if that is a concern..)I really liked mirena. I had no side effects. It was great!

Now that we are done, my husband had a vasectomy. It was alot of pain for him and we looked up pictures online to make sure his swelling was normal. The pictures from a reversal are horrible.

I say mirena...it can stay in for 5 years while you decide if you are done! Good Luck!

My tubal was painless and easy I had it 3wks after giving birth to my son I was 24yrs old when I did it and my decison was made and my doctor respected my wishes. I have 2kids and there are times I get a bit sad but i'm overall really glad I decided to do it.

Since your having a C-Section anyway and the doc will be looking at your tubes anyway I say just get it done, you will have down time from the birth regardless the Tubal wont add to anything

My thoughts are that Mirena is the least invasive and the easiest to reverse.

I had a tubal with my second son (C-Section) if you do that you need to be 110% positive that you do not want to have any more children. You can have it reversed, but you run a really high risk of having a tubal pregnancy and a higher rate or miscarrage. When I had mine done my husband and I were sure that we didnt want any more kids and now there are times that I regret it...Good luck with your decision and make sure you and your husband are in complete agreement!!!

I've had Mirena for over 2 years and love it. No problems, and the benefit of no periods either. AND if I want another baby it's the easiest option to "reverse". I also had c-section and my doctor offered to do a tubal during. I said I didn't think I wanted more kids but I was afraid to commit to something permanent. Mirena is a great option. It's good for 5 years and you MOST LIKELY will not have any problems. If you do, have it removed.

I have heard that C-section recovery is harder if you have your tubes tied. I don't really understand why, but I have heard it. Also, most doctors will tell you vasectomy is much easier and cheaper than tubals.

I had these options and my husband had the V. I had three kids, I felt he could handle something. And he did without any issues, as I am sure do most men.

I have heard too many negative things with Mirena. Plus, for me it was: Why pick an option that has all these potential issues when there is a choice that doesnt.

GL with whatever you decide!

I would definately try the Mirena or the Vasectomy vs. the tubal. I had a tubal when I gave birth to my third child in 2002 and thought I had read all the pros and cons of it but I did not have a good experience with mine. When my son was six months old I started experiencing heavy bleeding when it was not time for my cycle which was very embarrassing. The first time I was at my parents house on Thanksgiving and my sister saw it before anyone else. I did not even feel it. The second time maybe a month later I had just got to work (I work at a bank) and was coming from the kitchen area and felt the bottom fall out. I had to run to the bathroom (which I wasn't far from it) and it was too late. I had to sit there and wait for someone to come in and go get one of my co-workers to get my things so I could go home to change (30 miles one way). The bleeding was much worse than when I gave birth to my children. It did not matter if I had on a pad or tampon...it still did not help. I would where two just about everyday because I never knew when it would happen again. This became very expensive and I was always a nervous wreck. I went to two doctors and both of them gave me the same type of birth control pills to try and regulate the bleeding. I did not like this because I would not have had the precedure if I knew I would end up on the pill anyways. About three years later I found out my uterus was enlarged which explained my discomfort and cramping for several years. I was going to try the alternative to the hysterectomy since I was a working mom so I would not have much down time and could not because my uterus was so large...it would not work. In 2008 I finally decided to have a hysterectomy (laproscopic) and found that I had several tumors growing inside my uterus...so many they could not even count them. It was like I was six months pregnant!! I had even more growing on the outside and my doctor was really glad we did the prodedure when we did because this could have really caused problems for me. I felt 200% better afterwards!!! I have not heard of any problems with the mirena or the vasectomy...I would try one of them if you are thinking of having more children. Good luck with your delivery and whatever you and your husband decide!! :)

Blessed to be blessed: I'm am a working mom of three beautiful kiddos 14, 10, and 7. I am married to the love of my life, very happy and enjoying life. Be blessed!

I am just an outsider reading your question… but I t sounds like you are not ready for a permanent solution! Why don’t you try an IUD, I have personally heard that Mirena causes ovarian cists… my co-workers daughter had a grapefruit sized one on her ovary due do the Mirena.

Congratulations on your new baby boy… maybe worry about this when you are ready to make a final decision.

Good Luck!
E.

I really don't know about any of these but essure is a new procedure you might check into as well.

I had my tubes tied after my c-section - I have no regrets because I was and am still 100% sure that our family is complete. That being said, the tubal and vasectomy are not for you. It is supposed to be considered a permanent birth control - yes it can be reversed but it is not easy nor cheap and can be difficult to conceive after the tubal. You don't sound like you are in a place where you are sure you are done so you need to stick with a temporary BC. I don't know anything about the Mirena though. I know there are many others who will help you with that one. Sounds like you don't have much time to make the decision (as far as the tubal) so don't do it with the doubts you are having.

I have been using Nuvaring for about 18 month. I haven't had any complications and Mirena seems to have quite a few.

Hi D. -
I have Mirena & LOVE LOVE LOVE it!!! It was a little rough the first month, but after that its been great. 1 HUGE plus, I have not had a period in over a year!! I like the option that IF I choose to have more kids its just a quick trip to the docs office and its all taken care of.
I don't know your doctor, but when I mentioned to him I MAY want more kids, he immediately said then you shouldn't have your tubes tide. In fact he said he wouldn't do it, that's when he presented mirena to you.

I don't regret it one bit!!

I've had my Mirena for over a year now LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it. I have 3 friends who have it also & feel the same way I do.

yes you can reverse a vasectomy and have another one. my second boy is proof of it. but it all depends on lots of factors. yes you can reverse a t.l., but again it depends on factors. if you aren't completely sure, go with another option until you are sure. it would be very expensive and not guaranteed to reverse either of them.

You don't sound ready to have the tubal or the vasectomy - you need to think of them as PERMENANT!!! IF there is a chance you may want another baby - you should try the mirena - it is long term birth control - some women do great with it, some don't.

I had an emergency c/s with my third child - my husband was already scheduled for the vasectomy at that point - but I opted to have my tubes tied since it didn't change my recovery status and they were in there already!

I will add that my periods after that did become heavier (and heavier) which can happen after a c/s and after a tubal ligation - one of the things they don't tell you about! Many women don't experience it! I did go on to have an endometrial ablation and don't have periods at all now!

Please don't go into a tubal/vasectomy with the mindset of reversing it - use another method of b.c. until you are certain you are done having children!

I KNEW we were done - but it I still had times I was sad after my tubal - I knew 100% though that my family was complete and that part of me would just always "want" a baby...that is why I went ahead and did it - when you know, you know - and it sounds to me like you are still too uncertain!!!!

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