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The levonorgestrel intra-uterine system: Therapeutic application in family planning
  1. Lucia Margaret Dolan, MB BCh, MRCGP, MRCOG, Specialist Registrar Obstetrics and Gynaecology,
  2. Margaret Mulholland, MB BCh, BAO, MFFP, Family Planning Officer and
  3. John Price, MD, FRCOG, Consultant Obstetrician/Gynaecologist
  1. Belfast City Hospital, Belfast, Northern Ireland. Institution: Ulster Community and Hospital Trusts, Ulster Hospital, Dundonald, Belfast, Northern Ireland
  1. Correspondence Dr Lucia Dolan, Specialist Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, The Warrell Unit, Saint Mary's Hospital, Manchester M13 0JH


Objective To assess the non-contraceptive benefits of the levonorgestrel intra-uterine system 12 months following insertion in a family planning setting.

Design Postal questionnaire survey.

Setting Family planning clinics at the Ulster and Bangor Hospitals.

Subjects Eighty-six consecutive subjects fitted with the levonorgestrel intra-uterine system.

Results Response rate 87.3%. Outcome measured in terms of compliance, satisfaction and menstrual symptomatology. Reasons for insertion were as follows: 21.7% contraception only; 65.2% menorrhagia, 24.6% dysmenorrhoea and 1.4% premenstrual syndrome. Duration of menses was 8.25 days pre-insertion and 2.41 days at 12 months. Of the subjects, 59.4% experienced at least one hormonal side effect; 10.1% of systems were removed within 12 months. At 12 months 86.9% of women were satisfied and 9.8% of women planned to discontinue.

Conclusion The levonorgestrel intra-uterine system was acceptable to almost 80% of women after 12 months, with significant reduction in duration of menses. Family planning clinics are an ideal setting to implement the guidelines for the initial management of menorrhagia.

  • benefits
  • compliance
  • family planning clinic
  • levonorgestrel intra-uterine system
  • lng-ius
  • menstrual symptomatology
  • satisfaction

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