Progestin-only injectable contraceptives

Hormonal Method

Progestin-only injectables (also called POIs) are contraceptives that contain the progestin hormone and provide protection from pregnancy following an injection by a medical professional. They are given by injection of the progestin into the muscle or under the skin.

How it works

POIs work by preventing the release of eggs from a woman’s ovaries.

Common Types of POIs

  • POIs are broadly categorised based on their intervals of injection.
  • The most widely used injectables include; the monthly POI interval injection, the two months POI interval injection and the three months POI interval injection.

Effectiveness

  • If injections are done consistently and correctly, POIs are 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.
  • However, they are 96% effective as commonly used; that is, when a woman is late for an injection or misses an injection.

Advantages

    • When correctly and consistently used, POIs are highly effective and safe.
    • POIs do not require daily or weekly attention.
    • POIs are private: no one else can tell that a woman is using contraception.
    • POIs do not affect breast milk production hence can be used during breastfeeding.

Limitations

  • This method requires a woman to go to a health care facility regularly as it is given by medical professionals.
  • Return of fertility may be delayed for four months or longer after discontinuation.
  • Does not protect against HIV infection (AIDS) and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Side Effects experienced by some users

  • Changes in bleeding patterns for example irregular bleeding, heavy or prolonged bleeding, or spotting
  • Weight changes, headache, dizziness, mood swings, abdominal bloating, acne or breast tenderness

Juu life ni kujipanga!

Popular questions

You will get a small injection on your arm to numb you. This means you won’t feel pain at all during insertion. There will be a little pain or soreness as the wound heals for about a week.
Yes. A woman who has not had children generally can use an IUD, but she should understand that the IUD is more likely to come out because her uterus may be smaller than the uterus of a woman who has given birth.
Yes. If needed, ECPs can be taken again, even in the same cycle. A woman who needs ECPs often may want to consider a longer-acting and more effective family planning method
Yes. A woman who has not had children generally can use an IUD, but she should understand that the IUD is more likely to come out because her uterus may be smaller than the uterus of a woman who has given birth.
No. Most research finds no major changes in bleeding patterns after female sterilization. If a woman was using a hormonal method or IUD before sterilization, her bleeding pattern will return to the way it was before she used these methods

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Last modified: April, 2022

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