Etonogestrel (Implantation)


Etonogestrel (e-toe-noe-JES-trel)
Prevents pregnancy. This medicine is made of a hormone mixed in a plastic rod.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.


When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to etonogestrel, or if you are pregnant or have had blood clots in your legs, lungs, eyes, heart, or head. You should not use this medicine if you have unexplained vaginal bleeding, liver disease, or a history of breast cancer.

How to Use This Medicine

  • A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine. This medicine is placed under the skin of your arm, at the right time of your menstrual cycle.
  • You will be asked to sign a USER CARD and Patient Consent Form before you receive this medicine. This form tells you about the risks of using this medicine and the guidelines for safe use. Make sure you understand what is on the form before you sign it. If you have any questions ask your doctor.
  • After this medicine is inserted, you should check that it is in place by gently pressing your fingertips over the skin in your arm where this medicine was inserted. You should be able to feel the small rod.
  • Use another form of birth control, such as condoms, for seven days after insertion of this medicine.
  • Your doctor must remove this medicine after three years. If you would like to stop using this medicine, your doctor can remove it at any time.
  • If you still need to prevent pregnancy after this medicine is removed, you should start using another form of birth control (such as condom or diaphragm) right away. If you still want to continue using this medicine, your doctor can insert a new implant under your skin after taking out the old one.
If a dose is missed:
  • If you miss your appointment to remove or insert this implant, call your doctor to make another appointment.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using barbiturates (such as phenobarbital, Luminal®), griseofulvin (Grifulvin V®), rifampin (Rifadin®), phenylbutazone, phenytoin (Dilantin®), carbamazepine (Tegretol®), felbamate (Felbatol®), oxcarbazepine (Trileptal®), topiramate (Topamax®), modafinil (Provigil®), or herbal products that contain St. John's Wort. Tell your doctor if you are also using medicine to treat a fungus infection (such as itraconazole, ketoconazole, Sporanox®, Nizoral®). Make sure your doctor knows about ALL other medicines you are using.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Although you are using this medicine to prevent pregnancy, you should know that using this medicine while you are pregnant could harm the unborn baby. If you think you have become pregnant while using this medicine, tell your doctor right away.
  • Your doctor will need to do some tests before inserting this medicine. This is to make sure that you are not pregnant before you receive this medicine.
  • If you become pregnant while using this medicine, you have a higher risk of pregnancy that grew outside of your womb (ectopic pregnancy). Ectopic pregnancies can cause serious internal bleeding.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed. You may start using this medicine if you have had a baby more than four weeks ago.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have diabetes, high cholesterol or triglycerides, frequent headaches, seizures (epilepsy), gallbladder disease, kidney disease, depression, diabetes, or high blood pressure.
  • This medicine will not protect you from getting HIV/AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases. If this is a concern for you, talk with your doctor.
  • Tell your doctor if you have had an allergic reaction to numbing medicines (anesthetics) or antiseptics. These medicines will be used when etonogestrel implant is inserted into your arm.
  • This medicine may not work as well in women who are overweight. If this is a concern for you, talk with your doctor.
  • Check with your eye doctor if you wear contact lenses and you have vision problems or eye discomfort.
  • This medicine may cause several problems related to insertion and removal, such as pain, irritation, swelling, bruising, scarring, or other complications. Talk to your doctor about these possible risks.
  • Using this medicine may increase your risk of blood clots in legs (deep vein thrombosis), lungs (pulmonary embolism), brain (stroke), heart (heart attack), or eyes (blindness). Make sure your doctor knows at least four weeks before if you are going to have a surgery or will need to be on bed rest. Your risk of these serious medical problems is greater during surgery or bed rest, or if you smoke cigarettes.
  • This medicine may also increase your risk of having irregular monthly periods, ovarian cyst, high blood pressure, gallbladder problems, or liver tumors.
  • Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. This medicine may affect the results of certain medical tests.
  • Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Breast pain, discharge, or lumps.
  • Chest pain, shortness of breath, or coughing up blood.
  • Dark-colored urine or pale stools.
  • Fever, chills, cough, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, and body aches.
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting.
  • Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite.
  • Numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body.
  • Pain in your lower leg (calf).
  • Sudden and severe stomach pain, swelling, or tenderness.
  • Sudden or severe headache, problems with vision, speech, or walking.
  • Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Trouble sleeping, weakness, tiredness, or sadness.
  • Vaginal bleeding, burning, itching, or discharge.
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
  • Acne.
  • Back pain.
  • Extra hair on your face and body.
  • Irregular monthly periods.
  • Mild headache.
  • Mood changes or nervousness.
  • Pain during monthly periods.
  • Pain, itching, burning, swelling, or a lump under your skin where the implant is placed.
  • Spotty darkening of the skin, especially on the face.
  • Weight gain.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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