This is a non-biased review post that includes few comparison texts about Skyla and Mirena. Let’s find the real fact relating to Skyla vs Mirena fight.
Skyla vs Mirena: Introduction
Skyla and Mirena are two brands of intrauterine devices (IUDs) manufactured by Bayer Health Care Pharmaceuticals. Mirena was released into market before Skyla, which was (obviously non-coincidentally) released about during the expiry of the patent on Mirena.
Skyla and Mirena are small flexible T-shaped plastics that inhibit pregnancy formation by releasing a progestin hormone known as levonorgestrel (LNG) into a user’s uterus. The LNG then goes on to thicken cervical mucus, thin uterine wall, inhibit sperm movement, and reduce overall sperm survival (only small amounts, however, enter into the bloodstream).
A point to note, though, is that the exact working together of these actions to inhibit pregnancy formation is unknown.
Similarities of Skyla and Mirena
The two IUDs are similar in several respects with only handful distinguishable differences. Hence, in this article, both are at first described together after which their differences are enumerated.
To start with, IUDs are known to be over 99 percent effective. (20 times more than oral contraceptives, mostly due to the fact that one does not have to remember to “take a pill”)
Skyla and Mirena are placed in the uterus by a doctor and can be removed. And their work terminated, the moment the bearer decides to want to get pregnant.
Insertion takes only a few minutes, is nonsurgical, and is usually slightly painful, causes dizziness and sometimes minor bleeding, though none of these should last more than thirty minutes.
Two thin threads extend from the Skyla’s or Mirena’s stem and these threads are what are felt by the bearer of the IUD. Both IUDs claim to be friendly to both parous and nulliparous women.
Skyla Vs Mirena: Differences
Now, for the differences, the most notable one is their relative sizes. The “T” of Skyla is 1.18 inches while that of Mirena is 1.26 inches tall. Skyla also has a new inserter for easier intrauterine placement.
Skyla expires after 3 years while Mirena expires after 5 years. And, Skyla has a levonorgestrel reservoir of 13.5 milligrams, which are released at the rate of 14 micrograms per day at insertion but 5 micrograms per day after 3 years, while Mirena has a reservoir of 19.5 milligrams released at 20 micrograms per day at insertion and 10 micrograms per day after 5 years.
Statistical studies funded by the manufacturer of the two IUDs, Bayer, also show slight (essentially negligible) differences in their pregnancy rates (0.33% for Skyla, 0.31% for Mirena), expulsion rate (4.56% for Skyla, 3.58% for Mirena) and abnormal bleeding leading to termination of use (4.7% for Skyla, 4.9% for Mirena).
There was a statistically significant difference discovered; however, ovarian cysts seem to be a little more common with Mirena usage than Skyla (13.8% to 7.7%).
Skyla Vs Mirena: Side Effects
It certainly is worth mentioning that Skyla and Mirena are also used to treat excessive menstrual bleeding. Consequently, as a side effect, periods may become lighter, shorter, or stop altogether. Speaking of side effects, some other ones associated with using Skyla and Mirena are bleeding, abdominal/pelvic pain, ovarian cysts, back pain, headache/migraine, vomiting, bloating, breast tenderness or pain, weight gain (Read more here An Investigation on Mirena Weight Gain Issues), acne, depression, mood changes, loss of interest in sex and itching or skin rash.
People also find this article helpful- IUD Mirena Side Effects and Probable Complications
Don’t use Skyla or Mirena if…
Neither Skyla nor Mirena should be used by a pregnant or lactating woman (progestin hormones do enter into breast milk). Premature birth, severe infections, miscarriage, and death of mother are possible consequences of the usage of either during pregnancy. In fact, if pregnancy occurs (by accident) while an IUD is implanted, it has to be removed by a doctor. Also, women with pelvic infection and certain cancers should not use such IUDs. And, women who get infections easily must avoid these hormonal IUDs.
Skyla vs Mirena – winner?
Hence, even though there is very little difference between Skyla and Mirena, there are still factors that may determine choice of use. An obvious one is size. If ease of insertion is a concern (as with females with small uteri), Skyla is a good option. If, for example, very far expiry date is required (more than three years), then Mirena is the best choice.
Also read Weight Loss After Mirena Removal: Benefits and Side Effects