Safe and Suitable for Nearly All Women

Nearly all women can use implants safely and effectively, including women who:

  • Have had children or have not had children
  • Are married or are not married
  • Are of any age, including adolescents and women over 40 years old (see Question 13)
  • Have just had an abortion, miscarriage, or ectopic pregnancy
  • Smoke cigarettes, regardless of age or the number of cigarettes smoked
  • Are breastfeeding
  • Have anemia now or in the past
  • Have varicose veins
  • Are living with HIV, whether or not they are on antiretroviral therapy (see the box titled: Implants for Women Living With HIV)

Avoid Unnecessary Procedures

(see Importance of Selected Procedures for Providing Family Planning Methods, at the start of Chapter 26)

Women can begin using implants:

  • Without a pelvic examinationWithout any blood tests or other routine laboratory tests  
  • Without cervical cancer screening
  • Without a breast examination
  • Without a pregnancy test
    • A woman can have implants inserted at any time, even when she is not having monthly bleeding at the time, if it is reasonably certain she is not pregnant (see Pregnancy Checklist).
Blood pressure measurement is desirable before starting a hormonal method. However, where the risks of pregnancy are high and few methods are available, a woman should not be denied a hormonal method simply because her blood pressure cannot be measured. If possible, she can have her blood pressure measured later, at a time and place convenient for her.