When women remove their IUDs at home as part of a TikTok craze, doctors are concerned.
Now, there's an alternative to the TikTok fad of milk crates and dancing.
TikTok and YouTube are being used by some women to remove their Intra Uterine Devices (IUDs).
Women use IUDs (intrauterine devices) to prevent pregnancy.
To some, the idea of pulling a medical gadget through the cervical canal by grasping its strings is horrifying, but others question if it's a safe alternative to pursue.
What's the answer? Actually, no.
When it comes to the women's health institute at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, obstetrician Dr. Gloria Bachmann says it's probably safer than not.
A controlled atmosphere would be preferable.
Because it's done more or less blindly at home, everything is visualized in the office setting.
When it's removed, doctors are better positioned to address any bleeding or difficulties that may occur.
Because of this, it can produce more bleeding, greater discomfort, and perhaps bring the uterus to its knees, which isn't what you want," Bachmann said.
Unsafe, according to Dr. Anar Yukhayev, to remove one's own IUD.
His advice is to get an IUD removed by a medical practitioner, which generally takes less than 10 minutes.
A doctor noted that the IUD pops immediately out when the thread is grasped and forceps are used frequently, according to an obstetrician.
There are times when force is necessary.
Problem is, you must know exactly how much force to apply before you start. The IUD can be trapped if you're exerting too much force."
It was a serious accident.
It is possible to induce bleeding and harm by tugging on a trapped IUD, leading to a "emerging problem."
Pulling the IUD can cause the IUD to get lodged in an unintended location in the uterus, Yukhayev added.
Because of this, it's not a good idea, or perhaps harmful.
Yukhayev believes that when women indicate they want their IUDs removed because they experience bleeding and cramping, Yukhayev feels that their IUDs are already in the improper position.
It's possible that the IUD is misplaced if a woman experiences these symptoms with an IUD in situ. The improper position might cause cramping, pain, and irregular bleeding," he explained.
Making things worse by trying to fix them on your own is risky.
The removal of an IUD can be considerably more difficult if the uterus tilts forward or backward.
People who had to remove their own IUDs because their doctor wouldn't do it unless they choose another birth control or because they could not pay the removal price said they had no choice but to do it.
Yukhayev advises patients to ask their doctor's office about sliding scale fees based on their financial situation.
But the experts are baffled by doctors who oppose removal.
"I'm not sure why the service provider indicated they wouldn't remove it. Unless a string can't be located, unless the practitioner didn't perform the treatment, or unless there was worry about severe bleeding," Bachmann explained.
"Sometimes, it may not be completed on the same day. But it will happen. The reason why a provider wouldn't do it is beyond me.
Talk to your doctor about it.
Doctors should listen to patients' problems and identify solutions that work for them, Yukhayev said.
What do you think is your role as a physician? Tell the patient what you think is going on, what the risks and advantages are, what your alternatives might be so that we can both make an informed decision.
To this day he says he can't see himself ever being in the position of having to say no to a patient who sincerely wants their IUD removed.
As a result, it's probably time to find yourself a new doctor if your OB-GYN goes against your wishes.
For many women, IUDs remain a safe and effective long-term birth control choice.
If you're using a progesterone IUD, you'll be protected from pregnancy for five to seven years.
These are popular, but not everyone should wear them. If a woman is having troubles with hers, she should talk to her doctor about removing the device from her body completely.
There are others who have IUDs and don't even know they have them, making them an excellent choice.
For many women with heavy periods, it's also utilized to reduce bleeding. As a result, you aren't iron deficient," Bachmann explained.
"It's a completely safe procedure."