ParaGard is a common IUD used by millions of women all across the US. Unfortunately, the copper device has been known to migrate or break following implantation. When this happens, it can result in organ perforation and the need for surgery.
At Allen Berger & Associates, we’re here to share the risks and complications associated with ParaGard. If you or a loved one has suffered as a result of the device, contact our offices to talk to one of our birth control injury lawyers to schedule a consultation.
The Risks and Complications
There have been a number of investigations being conducted to learn about the risks and complications associated with the ParaGard IUD.
As stated on the Paragard website, the IUD may be difficult to remove because it is “stuck in the uterus.” In some instances, surgery may be required in order to remove the IUD properly.
There can be other problems with the IUD beyond it becoming stuck. A report made to the FDA noted a patient going to the clinic to go through removal after having the Paragard IUD implanted for eight and a half years. The doctors noticed that the copper coil was missing. This coil is commonly wrapped around the plastic T-shaped base. While copper was located on the “T” arms, no copper was contained on the vertical part.
There have been other complications where segments of the device break off during the removal process. This can damage the uterus and lead to additional surgery to ensure that the broken pieces are removed. Depending on the level of damage, there have been rare cases where a full hysterectomy is required, which can be devastating to the patient.
Another severe complication of Paragard can arise when the doctor implants the IUD for the first time. It may perforate the wall of the uterus. Perforations will often lead to various other complications, including scarring, infection, and even damage to other organs nearby. Surgery would be required in order to address the problems associated with the perforation.
In very rare instances, pregnancy has occurred with the IUD still in place. This is when there is an increased risk that it would be an ectopic pregnancy, where the fetus is outside of the uterus. When this happens, it requires immediate medical attention, typically involving surgery. Ectopic pregnancies can result in internal bleeding, infertility, and in rare instances, death.
Paragard and PTC
There are also product liability lawsuits happening as a result of some women suffering complications during device removal. This includes PTC, a serious brain injury known as pseudotumor cerebri. Women who have used hormonal products and were diagnosed with PTC have filed for lawsuits and there are a number of investigations to understand the correlation.
PTC creates an increase in pressure inside the skull for no obvious reason. Its name means “false tumor” as it appears to show symptoms that are similar to what a patient would experience if they had a brain tumor, except there is no tumor in place.
Symptoms can vary dramatically but typically include:
- Ringing in the ears
- Nausea and vomiting
- Moderate to severe headaches
- Vision problems
- Pain in the neck, shoulders, or back
- Light flashes
When too much cerebrospinal fluid collects around the brain, PTC occurs. It can be as a result of the body not reabsorb ring enough of the fluid or because the body is making too much. As the fluid levels increase, the pressure on the brain increases. The optic nerve may swell as a result of these conditions, which is why it commonly affects vision.
Depending upon what’s going on, PTC treatments can include medications, surgery for the optic nerve, and even brain surgery.
Various studies have linked a number of birth control products to a risk of PTC. One study in 2015 identified that there were higher cases of PTC in women using the Mirena IUD as opposed to those who were not. Additionally, a study in 2017 showed that the vices that release levonogestrel were more than seven times more likely to develop PTC.
What is Paragard?
Teva Pharmaceuticals is the brand behind the Paragard IUD. It’s been an FDA-approved contraception tool on the market since 1984. An IUD is a common alternative for women who do not want to take birth control pills.
The device itself is a T-shaped base made of plastic with a copper wire that is wrapped around it. The copper creates an inflammatory reaction within the uterus, creating toxicity for sperm and eggs. While in place, its purpose is to protect against pregnancy. Paragard’s website also identifies that the IUD can work for up to 10 years. They also identify that the product is the “only” IUD that is hormone-free. The website also states that the product is 99% effective in preventing pregnancies.
The side effects listed on the site are minimal and that they typically diminish after 2 to 3 months. The most common side effect reported is heavier, longer periods as well as spotting in between periods. If women experience longer periods after three months of having the IUD implanted, it is recommended that they contact a healthcare professional.
Injuries Associated with a Paragard IUD
The copper IUD has had a number of injuries associated with it over the years, including:
- IUD Becoming Stuck In The Uterus
- Perforation Of The Uterus
- Device Migration
- Breakage Of The Device
- Copper Wire Remaining, Leading To Inflammation And Injury
- Organ Damage
- Ectopic Pregnancy
File a ParaGard IUD Lawsuit Today
If you or one of your loved ones was implanted with the IUD from Teva Pharmaceuticals and have suffered serious side effects including those that are listed above, you may be eligible to file a birth control injury lawsuit. ParaGard lawsuits are taking place right now in order to recover damages. At Allen Berger & Associates, we have been investigating and litigating a number of cases. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn more about how you can file your own ParaGard IUD lawsuit.