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My Lippes Loop has been in place for 15 years. What now?
Do you have any resource information on the Lippes Loop IUD? Do you know the name of the manufacturer? We have a patient with a Lippes Loop which has been in place for 15 years. She was told it can remain in place indefinitely; however, another provider told her it must come out immediately. We can find no up-to-date information on the IUD. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

The Lippes Loop is a marvelous IUD. It was distributed by Ortho. Your patient may leave her IUD in place until she is menopausal, wants to have it removed or has a complication dictating that it be removed (such as pelvic inflammatory disease.) Most clinicians who had experience with this IUD recommend fairly strongly that it be removed when a woman reaches menopause.

While one type of infection increases slowly over time (actinomyses) other forms of PID are decreased as are expulsions, removals for pain and bleeding, and pregnancies. In balance, it would appear that the continued use of this nonmedicated IUD in a satisfied user is justified.

If your patient is totally asymptomatic (including an absence of a vaginal discharge and any uterine tenderness on pelvic exam) and still needs contraception, I would suggest that you leave her excellent contraceptive right where it is.

PEER-REVIEW PROCESS: Dr. Jack Lippes, who invented this IUD, states that it may be left in place as long as a woman needs contraception. He has followed many women, as have I, who have had a Lippes Loop in place for more than 15 years.

Posted 4-2006, Updated 12-26-2008

Robert A. Hatcher MD, MPH
Emeritus Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Emory University School of Medicine
Atlanta, GA

The directors and owners of this website and any publications and information concerning health matters offered here advise a person with a particular problem to consult a primary-care clinician or a specialist in obstetrics, gynecology, or urology (depending on the problem or the contraceptive) as well as the product package insert and other references before diagnosing, managing, or treating the problem.
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