The Copper Coil: One Year On

Oh yeah, it’s been one whole year since I had the copper coil fitted under general anaesthetic.  So now I figure it’s time for an update.  I had meant to do one six months on but forgot.  So here goes – it’ll only be short.

You can probably see from my previous entries that it was all a little rocky at first, and frankly it hasn’t all gone away.  It’s better, but it hasn’t all gone away.  My periods are lighter and shorter but still hurt quite a bit.  That I can get over.  It took about six months to stop bleeding completely, but those weren’t the longest six months of my life.  And, it’s not like it was going to kill me.

If you’ve just had the coil and, like me, it’s only a few weeks in and you’re still bleeding lightly, then I wouldn’t say it’s much to worry about.  I was reassured by a couple of doctors that light bleeding with the coil (especially if you’ve never popped a sprog) is quite normal and is nothing to worry about.  If it’s constant and heavy, then you should be concerned.  However, if it’s a little bit painful with a little bit of blood, then in all likelihood it will stop eventually.  I think you just have to be patient, after all you’ve just had a foreign item put into your body, there is bound to be some feedback from it.  It’s nothing that can’t be dealt with, with a little patience.

Even a year on, sometimes I get some random bleeding.  You deal with it as it comes and you move on, what more can you do?  Frankly, the minor inconvenience of a little pain and a small amount of bleeding are worth it for the major benefit of remaining childfree.  There’s nothing like spontaneous sex.

The Copper Coil: Who the fuck knows how many weeks on?

It’s is now who the fuck knows how many about 11 weeks since I had the copper coil fitted under general anaesthetic.

I thought it was going…okay.  That was until after my first period (a little before I stopped writing here about it).  I figured that I would bleed for a while after it was fitted.  Nay, I knew that I would.  Fine.  I was prepared for that.

What I wasn’t prepared for was that now, almost three months later, I would still be bleeding.  It’s nothing major, but it’s constant.  I can’t do a damn thing without bleeding.  Every morning: there is blood.  Every afternoon: there is blood.  Every bedtime: there is blood.  After sex: oh yeah, there is blood.  It’s not good.

So, I saw a nurse about it when I went for what should be the six week check, but it was actually done at seven weeks.  She was concerned.  She swabbed me (and hell, did I bleed after that!) and told me to come back the following week.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t as I was away.  So I finally made an appointment to see my GP a fair while after that.  He was unconcerned.  His eventual response was “wait another two months, and if it’s still bleeding then we’ll probably remove the coil and reconsider sterilisation”.  So that’s the middle of November.  I was hoping for earlier, but we can’t have it all.

At first, with this constant stream of blood, there was no pain.  Of late, there has been.  On Saturday I had the misfortune of attending an OU day school, and the chairs were proper school chairs: plastic, very hard and very upright.  Urgh.  After that, not only did my back hurt, but my uterus was screaming at me.  Come Sunday and it was so painful I couldn’t remain sat upright, eventually spending most of the day on the sofa.  I tried painkillers and they made no difference.  Into a normal week now, and it still hurts.  It is like period pain but without the period.  At times it can be very bad.  It’s not nice.

November suddenly seems to be quite far away.

The Copper Coil: Four Weeks On

It is now four weeks since I had the Copper Coil fitted under general anaesthetic.  That means that this is the final one of my weekly updates.  After this, I think that I will fall back to once per month.

I suppose that this could be considered an exciting time in my life with the Coil.  As it’s now four weeks on, that means that it’s time for my period – almost.  On Thursday of this week, it will have been exactly a calendar month, therefore the start of my last period (albeit forced by surgery).  I am sort of looking forward to it, with some trepidation, mind.  I want to see how much it’s going to hurt, how heavy it will be, and how I cope with it.

Over the past week it’s been okay.  On Sunday it hurt a lot, and there was an appearance of blood.  I assumed it may be to do with my uterus filling with blood as it would at the moment, and having some issues with the coil being there.  No proper bleeding though.  The most annoying thing about this was that it was the first time in almost a month I had worn something other than my coveted bleeding pants (big, massive granny-type pants that I feel comfortable in while bleeding).  Arse.

Today I went to the dentist, and before they did an x-ray, they asked “Are you pregnant?”  I said with quite a hearty laugh “Heh.  No!”.  I’m sure quite a few people would wonder why I give such a reaction, but it feels perfectly legitimate to me.  I am still so happy about being temporarily sterile.  It amazes me.  I am totally in awe of the whole thing.  To think: I have wanted this since I was a child, and now it’s finally happening.

When you compare the British attempts at publicising contraception, with those in parts of Europe, I can understand why so many young people feel frozen out of getting the right contraception for them.  We don’t need things like the pathetic softly-softly approach in primary schools (i.e., none), or the entirely biological approach in our secondary schools (which does nothing to stop kids having sex, they just know how it works).  We need adverts that don’t patronise and trivialise contraception as it feels this Levonelle one does.  Could it be anymore girly and wishy-washy?

No, we need hard ones that tell the truth of what it’s all about if you decide to fuck your life up by having a kid when you don’t want or are not ready for one.  Why does Britain take such a pathetic approach to it?  People really need to get over themselves and realise that contraception is not an evil thing.  No, it’s the best thing that happens to some people.

The Copper Coil: Three Weeks On

It is now three weeks since I had the Copper Coil, or Nova T 380 fitted under general anaesthetic.

What can I say?  Some things aren’t too dissimilar to last week.  I still haven’t quite stopped bleeding, and, frankly, that’s starting to piss me off.  It’s entirely random still, as is the amount.  Some days it’s just the tiniest amount, other days it’s enough to warrant the use of a proper pad.  I sincerely wish it would make its mind up.

Now I’m eating and drinking fairly normally, which is good.  I’m back on chocolate, tea, tasty sweet things, stuff like that.  Not a huge amount, but stuff like that.  It’s also less a case of eating simply because I have to have some sustenance during the day, but eating because I’m hungry and eating things that I like.

Discomfort wise.  Yeah, it still hurts.  No lie there at all.  At times it hurts a lot.  There’s still no correlation between the pain and bleeding.  There also doesn’t seem to be a correlation between position and pain.  The pain comes when I’m sat down, bending down, going about my day, standing up.  Just whenever.  Sometimes it feels like period pain, other times it doesn’t.

Last week, the most important thing on my mind was that the two week abstinence period was over.  And weren’t we glad.  Yeah it’s all good now.  The spontaneity of it is really nice.  And a follow on from that, is that whenever an advert comes on the TV for pregnancy tests (of which there are a few and they are just fucking awful, so badly dubbed, and just…shit.  I mean seriously, how retarded do you have to be to get a pregnancy test that rather than just having the lines says “Pregnant” or “Not Pregnant”?  I assume it’s so people can show it to their equally retarded friends, “LOOK!  I PISSED ON A STICK!”), I start dancing on my chair proclaiming that I’m not pregnant and that I’m temporarily sterile for up to the next five years.  I’m so jubillant about it.  I’m sure that should another woman see me behave like that, they would think I’m not “normal”.  Well screw them.  If this is what proper married unprotected but safe sex is like, then I don’t want any of your “normal” bullshit.

I am so very indebted to my surgeon.

The Copper Coil: Two Weeks On

I think this entry may be somewhat different to my previous one.

It’s now two weeks since I had the copper coil fitted under general anaesthetic.  Last week I reported that I was feeling terrible.  That’s terrible physically and emotionally.  Last week I couldn’t eat or drink properly, I kept crying and still had some discomfort.  This week is somewhat different.

There’s still some discomfort at times, and I’m sure that’s just it all bedding in, as it has only been a couple of weeks.  Every so often I find a bit of blood, but nothing like before.  It doesn’t flow, but rather shows.  I suppose it’s called spotting.  Often I get aches that feel like it’s about to bleed but nothing happens.  I’m glad nothing happens, but I could live without the discomfort.  It’s a bit uncomfortable right now.

A knock on effect of the first couple of days afterwards has meant that because I laid on my side one night for too long, my hip was out of joint for much longer than normal, and since then it’s been really, really painful.  It’s very difficult to put any weight on it, bend over or crouch down.  Getting out of the shower is a pain…literally.  That was an unexpected side effect of the whole thing.

I no longer cry, which is a good thing, and helps me to realise that it was probably just a side effect of the general anaesthetic.  Hell, I even have my sense of humour back and crack a few jokes.

In terms of food and drink, things are better.  I still don’t feel hungry in the morning, but that’s par for the course from before I suppose.  Tea is back on the menu.  From late last week I began drinking a cup once per day, and now I’m onto two.  Oh yes, I’ve also eaten a bit of chocolate, and a few biscuits.

I’m still not at work.  This isn’t sickness imposed leave, it’s because I’ve been told not to come in.  I have quite enjoyed sitting around with the laptop, watching the birds in the garden.  I think the past couple of weeks of enforced rest have probably been a good thing.  I did declare the other day that I’m not, ever, going to lift anything heavy at work again.  I’m just not.  I’m not comfortable with the amount of strain it will put on that part of my body, and quite frankly I don’t think that carrying something at work is worth having this perforating my womb…One trip to emergency surgery please?

The Nova T 380 IUD
The Nova T 380 IUD

The final thing to say is that today is the end of the hospital imposed two week abstinence.  Oh, and am I pleased or what?  Spontaneous, unprotected sex.  We’ve been married two and a half years, and in that time we haven’t had spontaneous unprotected sex.  Now’s the time.  The past two weeks have gone slowly, not least because I have felt terrible, but also because of this ban on sex.  It’s been particularly apparent since the weekend when I’ve been feeling properly better.  Finally it’s at an end.

Best sex in the world: Married, let’s not have a baby sex!

The Copper Coil: One Week On

You can probably imagine that since it was only a week ago that I was in hospital, the thing that’s been on my mind has been the foreign body in my uterus.  Of course it has, it would be silly if it hadn’t been.  It’s early days, I know.  Things will, I hope, get better.  I think I might do updates on this every so often, you know once per week until my check up, and once per month there after.  It’ll be interesting for me to chart how it’s gone, especially when I return to my surgeon.

I won’t lie.  Things could have been better.

I bled heavily for about five days.  The first term that popped into my head was that I was “bleeding like I was dying”.  I felt so drained, especially everytime I stood up and blood gushed.  My head would feel squeezed and I’d feel like I was going to pass out.  Luckily I didn’t.  The pain in the first few days was also quite bad.  Not as bad as when I was in hospital, but still quite bad.  Now the bleeding has almost stopped.  It’s sort of weird, there’s some old brown stuff, but every now and then there will be a sudden amount of bright red blood.  TMI?

Last week I managed two days at work.  This week: none so far.  All weekend I felt horrible.  Really horrible.  Sleeping a fair bit, not moving much, not eating a lot.  Had a terribly dry mouth all weekend – still do.  I’m now drinking almost two litres of water per day.

Am I eating?  Am I bollocks.  It’s been years since I had just serious/acute eating problems.  I don’t understand it.  Before the surgery I had a really good appetite.  Really good, I was actually beginning to enjoy some foods.  Now…nothing.  I simply don’t feel hungry.  I can feel that my stomach is empty, but I simply don’t register any feelings of hunger.  I’ve also gone off things that I used to love such as tea and chocolate.  On the morning of the surgery the last thing that I drank was a big cup of tea.  Since then, I was offered one in hospital but couldn’t face it.  I’ve had two cups of tea since I’ve been back at home.  And I think the last one was on Thursday.  I just can’t bring myself to have any.  I assumed for the first few days it was the effects of the general anaesthetic, but it’s now a week and I’m still not eating or drinking much.  Water is absolutely fine.  Despite feeling rather queasy I haven’t thrown up at all, but I’m just not hungry.  For days now it’s been one meal per day (which I pick at mostly rather than eat), with perhaps some bread in the afternoon.  I just don’t feel like eating.  It bothers me a bit.  I know that my body can’t sustain this kind of treatment for very long.

The pain.  Oh now, the pain.  It went away for a while, and then last night I had such bad what I would describe as period pain.  It just wouldn’t go away.  No matter what position I lay in, it wouldn’t go away.  Even my coveted normal lying on my front didn’t work, in fact it felt worse.  This morning it was bad, very uncomfortable, but no blood.  That foxes me.  With pain like that, I expect blood shortly after, but there’s been none.

It does concern me that I may become anaemic.  Even the post-insertion bleeding was more than my normal period.  It felt like the first day of my period over and over again.  But it didn’t feel enough to be the period that I was expecting as well as insertion bleeding.  I sort of expect a load of random bleeding over the next month or so.  I just have to make sure that it doesn’t become so heavy that my body can’t cope with it, therefore I become anaemic.  If my periods become unmanageable then I will return to my surgeon and ask for the proceedure that I originally requested.  Knowing that this was the final thing to try before sterilisation, I have nowhere left to go.  It’s Nova T 380 or bust I suppose.

There have been two good things.  I got a copy of the discharge letter from the hospital and was comforted to see that while he was in there, the surgeon did a few checks on my reproductive system in general, and everything is absolutely fine.

And, I seem to have stopped crying.  Finally.

You’ll start to feel it in a minute…

So, yesterday I had the Copper Coil, or rather the Nova T 380 IUCD fitted under general anaesthetic.

I arrived at my alotted time: 11:30, was admitted and then spent the next two or so hours reading and looking around.  Then it was my turn to go in.   I was, quite wonderfully the first case.

I was taken to anaesthesia where about five or six anaesthetists were all tending to me.  Talking to me, injecting me, reassuring me, holding my hands, hooking me up to machines.  Then I was wheeled into theatre.  I moved across to the table, which was exceptionally narrow, laid back down and was then approached by nurses on both sides, about four of them.  There were still two anaesthetists.

A nurse held my hand, two other nurses put my legs in stirrups – oh the indignity! – and then the white stuff went into my vein.  The anaethetist who was holding the oxygen mask over my face said “You’ll start to feel it in a minute…“.  I could feel the coldness in the back of my hand and how it was moving up my arm.  She told me to keep my eyes open, so I kept looking at the lights but before I knew it I was saying “Oh yeah.  I can feel it already“.  Except, I only managed to get half of “already” out.  From now, I have no idea of what happened.  I assume that he inserted the coil and it all went very well.

Next thing I knew I was waking up in recovery, it was about 15 minutes after I had gone in and I had no recollection after looking at the ceiling and not finishing that sentence.  I have such a good reaction to anaesthetic.  For some reason I was in recovery for longer than anyone else.  While I was there, (almost an hour) about eight other people came and went.

In recovery I realised that I was in quite a significant amount of pain.  I shan’t lie or dress it up at all, it really did fucking hurt.  I couldn’t believe how much it hurt.  I mentioned it to a nurse who had an anaesthetist sign for some painkillers.  I was having “obs” done every few mintes while there, and they were also checking the pad.  Eventually I was taken back to the ward where The Boss was waiting for me.  I had obs done every half hour for a little while, same for the pad checking, and I was given some painkillers.  Eventually about three hours later they wanted to let me go home.  They had fed me some toast, water and made me go for a wee.  I was then let home.

The pain was eased by the painkillers.  There were a few occassions when I felt some pretty bad and prolonged spells of pain, and can only imagine how much more painful they would have been without any painkillers.

Today I feel okay.  A bit weak and tired, but okay.  The bleeding has been minimal – I was expecting more especially with it being the copper coil and not the hormonal one.  I have to see a nurse at my GPs surgery in about six weeks time to make sure it’s all okay.

The little leaflet I got with it says that it’s not really for use in young women (I’m in my early twenties) or those without children (I’m as nulliparous as you can get).  But hell, it’s working for me so far.  Now I just need to abstain for two weeks, keep anti-bacterial, take it fairly easy physically at least until I’ve had my check-up, and be prepared for more random bleeding.  Now that the pain is pretty much over, I’m glad that I had it done this way.  I couldn’t have coped if they had kept trying in the GP surgery.  I’m not sure I would have liked a local anaesthetic.  Having such a good reaction to general anaesthetic has been both a good and learning experience.

The doctors, nurses and my surgeon were all very nice and kind to me, they were all very reassuring.  It’s nice to have someone hold your hand, speak to you gently, explain what’s going on and smile at you.  From when my surgeon handed me the consent form, to the nurse holding my hand as I drifted off, and the nurses who were there when I woke up – they were all smiling at me, and it made me feel very much at ease.

Would I recommend having the coil inserted under general anaesthetic?  Yes.  But, only as a last resort.  Just because you think it’s going to hurt a bit, is not a good enough reason, and it wasn’t my reason.  I could have coped with the pain.  Plus, it’s more the pain you’ll feel afterwards that would bother me.  The anaesthesia can’t deal with that.  It just wasn’t possible to open my cervix except while under the influence of Propofol.

Now I just need to express my thanks to the nursing teams and my surgeon for a job well done!

It can’t come soon enough.

Product Placement Fail, or is it Win?

Product Placement Fail.  Or maybe it’s win?  I’d say win.

I edge ever one step closer to my ideal of never, ever procreating.

A couple of weeks back I went to see a gynaecologist.  I did a deal with him, and now, next week I am getting the Copper Coil fitted while under general anaesthetic.  Wicked.

Yesterday I had the pre-surgical assessment appointment.  I was swabbed for MRSA, weighed, had my blood pressure taken, and answered a whole load of questions.  Exciting eh?

But I have to think…the indignity of all of this?  I’ll be unconscious while half naked in an operating theatre with a load of people fiddling/looking around my doodah.  That will be my first experience of anything quite like that.  My period may well have already started, which just adds an ick factor to the whole thing.  I’ll have to be looked after for a while, and may not be able to return to work for a couple of days.  It may make my periods heavier and somewhat more painful.  I can cope.  Constitution of an ox, me.

On the up side: “unprotected” sex.  I’m married, I shouldn’t be using condoms.
And just what type of google hits will I be getting having used the term unprotected sex?

No doubts about this.  None at all.

Will I return in the future to be sterilised?  Of course…nothing could stop me.