Giving Specific Instructions

Keep arm dry
  • The user should keep the insertion area dry for 4 days. She can take off the gauze after 2 days and the adhesive bandage and surgical tape when the incision heals, usually after 3 to 5 days.
Expect soreness, bruising
  • After the anesthetic wears off, her arm may be sore for a few days. She also may have swelling and bruising at the insertion site. This is common and will go away without treatment.
Length of pregnancy protection
  • Explain that it is important to have implants removed before they start to lose effectiveness. She can have a new set of implants inserted if she wants.
  • Discuss how to remember the date to return for implant removal and possible replacement.
  • Give each woman the following information in writing on a reminder card, like the one shown below, if possible, and explain:
    • The type of implant she has and in which arm
    • Date of insertion
    • Month and year when implants will need to be removed or replaced
    • Where to go if she has problems or questions with her implants

Sample Implant Reminder Card

How Can a Partner Help?

The client’s partner is welcome to participate in counseling and learn about the method and what support he can give to his partner. A male partner can:

  • Support a woman’s choice of implants
  • Show understanding and support if she has side effects
  • Use condoms consistently in addition to the implant if he has an STI/HIV or thinks he may be at risk of an STI/HIV
  • Help to remember when the implant is due for removal

"Come Back Any Time": Reasons to Return

Assure every client that she is welcome to come back any time—for example, if she has problems, questions, or wants another method; she has a major change in health status; or she thinks she might be pregnant. Also if:

  • She has pain, heat, pus, or redness at the insertion site that becomes worse or does not go away, or she sees a rod coming out.
  • She wants the implants taken out, for whatever reason.
  • It is time for the implants to be removed and, if she wishes, for new implants to be put in.

General health advice: Anyone who suddenly feels that something is seriously wrong with her health should immediately seek medical care from a nurse or doctor. Her contraceptive method is most likely not the cause of the condition, but she should tell the nurse or doctor what method she is using.