My name is Vicky. I am currently 39 years old. I am a mother to three wonderful boys ages 21, 13 and 9. I will try and keep my story brief.
While still married to my first husband, Michael, we decided that we were done having children after the birth of our third and youngest son. So in August of 2004, Michael had a vasectomy done so that I would not have to go through the pain and recovery of a tubal ligation. In 2005, I was diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (Ulcerative Colitis) after being hospitalized for five days with pancreatitis. I was told by my GI doctor that it was in the lower rectal area and was given mesalamine suppositories to use to reduce the inflammation. I healed and went four years without an issue or relapse from my UC.
In 2008, Michael and I were divorced. I began dating my junior high sweetheart. Since I already had three children and he had two, I did not want to take a chance of getting pregnant. I spoke to my OBGYN about having my tubes tied and he informed me about Essure. He indicated that he did not have the training to perform the Essure procedure so it was done by another OBGYN in his office at the local hospital on September 22, 2009 (a day before my middle child’s 9th birthday). I went home with the ‘usual’ spotting and cramping. A few days later, I devloped a yeast infection and was placed on Diflucan. It cleared up. I was experiencing more abdominal and pelvic pain along with painful, long menstrual cycles that were unpredictable. I would literally feel my body seize up from the cramping in my uterus to the point I could not walk during these episodes. My energy levels were becoming depleted and sex became very painful; I also had my first flare up of UC in several years. My GI doctor placed me on medication to bring it under control. Since then, I have had NUMEROUS flare ups (or one continuous flare up) of my UC and medications are not working to stop the symptoms. I have been hospitalized three times in the past two years for UC flare ups. The pelvic pain persists and I am told that it’s my UC flares and not the Essure. Once I was finally able to have the HSG test done, I about flew off the table in pain when they tested the right side. I began seeing another OBGYN in my doctor’s office and she could feel something upon examination of my uterus on the right side. She placed me on birth control because of my heavy periods.
In January 2012, I had emergency surgery to have my appendix removed. I still have a lot of pelvic pain to which no one can explain. My bladder hurts all the time (no sign of urinary tract infection) and I have constant pressure and fullness in my pelvic region. Again, my doctors say it is due to my UC. I often wondered if it was the Essure device, but no doctor wants to listen and take my concerns to heart. They believe they are safe and effective. My last flare up, I experienced EXTREME pain on my right side.
Last month, my sister referred me to her OBGYN for evaluation of my excessive periods, pain and bloating I have still been experiencing going on now for five years. My latest menstrual cycle lasted 8 weeks and hormones would not stop it. My new OBGYN believes that I need a partial hysterectomy and it should not only stop the menstrual bleeding, but also help my UC symptoms subside due to the hormone changes I experience around the time of my period. Those hormones often would send me into another relapse.
I plan to have my tubes removed along with the Essure devices when she performs my surgery on October 29th. I want this device out of me so that I can see if once and for all my ‘bowel issues’ subside. Otherwise, I am looking at a complete colectomy as that is my final option since medications are not working for me.
I am very concerned that my auto-immune disease has been affected by the Essure device. Maybe I am sensitive to the nickel or my body is slowly rejecting them. In any case, I want to be free of this device and pray for healing. I also feel strongly that Essure should be taken off the market.
Thank you for reading my story.