Essure Withdrawn Everywhere but U.S.

Essure Sterilization Hurts

The Essure coil is a female sterilization method manufactured by the German pharmaceutical company Bayer since 2002. Bayer has now withdrawn the device everywhere … except the United States. And U.S. is the device’s biggest market.

As pointed out in the BBC and HLI links above, Essure is a small metal piece inserted into the fallopian tubes, causing scar tissue to form, thus rendering the woman infertile. The side effects are significant and can be very painful.

Bayer itself warns on its site of: pain, danger of allergic reaction, the insertion not staying put and requiring surgical removal, and ectopic pregnancies still being possible (life-threatening if left untreated).

Users on various sites list a long range of problems experienced, from extreme pain to suicidal thoughts. Consumer advocate Erin Brockovich has part of her website dedicated to problems experienced with the Essure coil. In 2015, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also had to open an investigation following complaints about Essure.  The FDA found:

“Over the past several years, the FDA has been examining the growing number of adverse event reports associated with the use of Essure. Reported adverse events include persistent pain, perforation of the uterus and/or fallopian tubes, intra-abdominal or pelvic device migration, abnormal or irregular bleeding, and allergy or hypersensitivity reactions.”

The Marriage at Cana

HLI Stands By Women

HLI opposes sterilization – such as Essure,  just as it opposes all forms of birth control. Not only is contraception morally unjustified, it is also not in a woman’s best health interests.  The Catholic Church teaches women are not meant “to undertake methods of birth control which are found blameworthy by the teaching authority of the Church in its unfolding of the divine law” (Gaudium et Spes, 51). Married couples should be open to life. As HLI’s President, Father Shenan J. Boquet, wrote recently, contraception is toxic; it increases abortion, and destroys women and families.

Contraception Destroys Love

“If therefore there are well-grounded reasons for spacing births, arising from the physical or psychological condition of husband or wife, or from external circumstances, the Church teaches that married people may then take advantage of the natural cycles immanent in the reproductive system and engage in marital intercourse only during those times that are infertile…” (Humanae Vitae, 16). This is also known as natural family planning. At the National Prayer Breakfast in 1994, Mother Teresa of Calcutta said: “I also know that there are great problems in the world – that many spouses do not love each other enough to practice natural family planning.  We cannot solve all the problems in the world, but let us never bring in the worst problem of all, and that is to destroy love.  And this is what happens when we tell people to practice contraception and abortion.”

About HLI Staff

HLI staff writers bring you stories from the mission field and the latest information on life and family issues. All HLI articles are true to Catholic teaching.

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