Guest Blog By: Dr. Barbara Mercado FACOG
Generations of Women OBGYN has committed to a procedure every woman in this community should know more about. The Essure procedure is the fastest, easiest, safest, and most effective form of permanent birth control in the history of medicine. And for the life of me, I can’t understand why so few physicians are talking about it. The women of this community SHOULD have all the facts, and I’m here to make sure they do. Ladies, I am not saying whether you should, or shouldn’t use birth control. That is a very private, personal matter for each of us to consider. But, for those who are considering it, there is a better, safer choice available.
What is Essure?
The Essure procedure is for women who feel their family is now complete, and desire permanent contraception. Using a camera, one small, flexible insert is placed in each fallopian tube. These inserts are made of a nickel-titanium based material called nitinol, the same soft, elastic material that has been used in heart stent patients for decades. Upon release, the Essure insert expands to conform to the natural unique shape of the fallopian tubes. Once in place, the insert elicits a natural healing response that completely occludes the fallopian tubes, typically within three months. After 3 months, the Essure confirmation test is performed to confirm both satisfactory insert location, as well as, bilateraltubal occlusion. In other words, this test will prove that the procedure worked. No other permanent birth control procedure for women can confirm both of these features. The Essure confirmation test offers you unprecedented peace of mind that your family is now complete.
Why Choose Essure?
After ten years, there have been ZERO pregnancies among Essure users in clinical trials once the confirmation test has been done. No other permanent contraception has been shown to be as effective. It is, by far, the most effective form of permanent birth control in the history of medicine. When you compare Essure “the product” and Essure“the procedure” to the other forms of birth control it breaks down like this:
Essure can be done within minutes. These procedures have been done for the past ten years and there have been over a half million women worldwide who’ve chosen this better,safer and more effect standard of care when they’re done having children. With Essure, there is no cutting and no general anesthesia is required. The procedure is completed within my office and it takes less than ten minutes. You will be headed home in less than an hour…back to performing normal daily activities. There are no hormones involved with Essure, which in turn, means no side effects. Let me say that again, “no side effects.” Some women will have a change in their monthly cycles, but that is due to the lack of OCP they’ve been using for years. Most insurance companies cover the Essure procedure, meaning that the cost of this permanent solution is usually as low as your regular visit co-pay.
After all of this, the question becomes “Why NOT Essure?”
Essure is very close to becoming the standard of care in this country, as well it should be. But, when you look at the numbers, there are still around 700,000 lap tubals performed every year, half of those are post-partum, which aren’t candidates for Essure. Still, that means that 350,000 tubals are perform every year, instead of Essure. Which means that Essure is only being offered to around 17% of women nationwide. The sad thing is that this disconnect seems to be nothing more than the age old issue of people struggling with change. You have to trust your doctor, but your doctor should be providing you with the very latest, and the very best, options for all your health needs. That’s how trust is earned.
When most patients hear the words “permanent contraception” they think “tubes tied.” Generations of Women wants to change that in our community. When women think of a permanent solution to birth control, they should be thinking of “ESSURE.” Our mission has been to make women aware. I cannot tell you how many times I have shared this procedure with women, from all over, who have never heard of it. Essure has been out there for 10 years. There are no more excuses. We need to make sure women and physicians are talking about this every time a patient is in for an annual, having a conversation about Birth Control, or during a simple OB visit. If your family is complete, there is no better option. Knowledge is empowering, and I believe that eventually, you will see Essure replace the term “tubes tied.” It already has at Generations of Women OBGYN.
If any woman in this community has any questions about the Essure product or procedure, do not hesitate to call my office at 540-654-8400. My staff will gladly set up a freephone consultation with me whether you are a patient of mine or not. I am THAT committed to making sure every woman understands her options. If you are not ready to take that step but have a loved one who is, have them call me. Please, make sure that they have explored all of their options before making a permanent decision.