After having problems with my cycle for a while, my doctor suggested endometrial ablation (NovaSure), but in order to the ablation, he required I be sterilized as he said that was the FDA recommendation. He said Essure was the safest product, that it had no side effects, quickest recovery time, etc.
So, after seeking a second opinion from another doctor who agreed with him, I went back to my doctor to have Essure done. The procedure was performed in his office with only shots in the cervix for numbing. It was incredibly painful. By the time we were finished, I was hurting so badly, my entire body was shaking.
The pain did not get better, so I went back to my doctor the next week. We discovered my left fallopian tube was infected and had abscessed. He prescribed antibiotics and pain meds and for me to come back the next week to follow up. I didn’t make it to that appointment because the pain became worse, and I couldn’t keep my fever down, so I went to the ER. I ended up spending four days in the hospital on three different IV antibiotics and pain medicine round-the-clock.
When I went back to follow up with my doctor, he said a hysterectomy was pretty much my only option because of the infection, so that is what we did. At 38 years of age, I had to have my cervix, uterus, both tubes and part of an ovary removed. During the surgery, my doctor discovered that the abscess on my left tube was the size of a softball, and when he touched it, the infection spilled out. So, I ended up spending two nights in the hospital on IV antibiotics again.
Evidently, my body rejected Essure from the moment it was put in. I had no idea that Essure contained nickel, which I have sensitivity to. When I asked my doctor why he did not disclose that information, he said it was because the FDA did not require him to. I had Essure in for about 4 weeks and was in excruciating pain the entire time. I could not work, could not drive, and could not do anything to help care for my daughter and my household.
It has been over a week since my hysterectomy, and I still have some of the same symptoms prior to surgery – metallic taste in my mouth, constant nausea, food aversions (I am only able to “stomach” 4-5 foods right now), fatigue, etc., and still have several more weeks of dealing with the pain and healing from the surgery. Although I hope they go away, I am worried I will have these problems forever.
I have already lost over one month’s worth of work time, with at least another month off because of the surgery. I am self-employed, which means that when I’m unable to work, I do not get paid. This has affected my family’s financial health. In addition, I was in grad school before I had the procedure. After all the complications, time in the hospital and my surgery, I had to drop out.
Essure needs to be taken completely off the market, but in the meantime, I would like to the FDA to go back to requiring doctors to disclose the nickel and PET fiber information to their patients. No woman should ever have to endure this kind of pain and loss.