AFTER the birth of her third child, Simonne Burford was encouraged by her doctor to go on contraception.
She was offered Essure, which is a tiny metal coil inserted into each fallopian tube.
It works by essentially closing the tubes and stopping the sperm reaching the egg, the brand stated.
Discussing the device with her doctor in 2008, Simonne said it was sold to her as a ‘quick fix’ with ‘no down sides or side effects’.
But all that changed once she had the implant fitted, which immediately left her in pain.
“You feel like you’re going to die, you feel like you’re dying from the inside out.
“It was probably the most painful experience I’ve ever had, including childbirth.
“I started having nausea, vomiting, I had metal taste in my mouth, one side of my face went numb,” she told 60 minutes on Channel 9.
She added that her hair had been falling out in clumps and that she also experienced a rash on her hands and feet, that later developed into blisters.
Alongside this, she had been pushing out blood clots the size of golf balls and had ‘continual periods that didn’t stop’.
After telling her doctor about the symptoms, Simonne was told it was ‘all in her head’, and was then referred to the mental health team.
It was six years until she was able to find a doctor to remove the device.
During the procedure, it was revealed that one of the devices had broken inside the 36-year-old.
She was told she had the uterus of a 70-year-old and due to this, went on to have a hysterectomy.
Essure was first approved for use by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in Australia in 1999.
However, in 2008, manufactures decided to stop the sales and marketing of the device, rendering it unavailable for patients.
At the time over 16,000 complaints had been made across the US and Australia.
Since then, this figure has quadrupled, with the company reaching a $2.5billion settlement with 39,000 women.
Some patients who had the device fitted had come forward with perforation of the uterus and/or fallopian tubes, identification of inserts in the abdominal or pelvic cavity, persistent pain, and suspected allergic or hypersensitivity reactions, the brand stated.
Dr Graeme Walker, head of gynaecology at the Gold Coast University Hospital has been trying to help women who had received the form of contraception at this hospital.
While he never inserted one himself, he has conducted 20 hysterectomies in order to remove the devices.
In a statement, the manufacturer Bayer said: “Reduced patient interest in permanent birth control options resulted in a commercial decision to discontinue the distribution of Essure.”
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