A General Overview on Progestin Injection



What is Progestin?


Progestin is a synthetic form of the body’s naturally-happening hormone progesterone. It was made to interact with progesterone in the body to lead to the effects of progesterone. In other words, this means that it is designed to make what the natural one does. For example, it can lead to some changes in the endometrium that stops it from developing. When natural progesterone is not absorbed well by taking a pill orally and processed by the body, that is why the progestin was originally made to replace the original one. Now, progesterone is available in a tiny form that can be absorbed much easier. 


What are the Uses of Progesterone Injection?


There are certain uses for progesterone injection including: 

  • Treating uterine bleeding caused by a hormonal imbalance.
  • Treating females who experience absence or irregularity in their monthly menstrual cycles.


How is Progesterone Injection best Taken?


Progesterone injection must be taken under the supervision of doctors. Before taking it, there are certain instructions to follow including: 

  • Progesterone injection is given as a shot into a muscle.
  • Washing hands before and after use.
  • Avoid using if the solution has particles.
  • Avoid using if the solution changes color.
  • Throwing the needle away in a disposal box. 
  • Never reuse the needles or other items


What are the Side Effects if There are Any?


  • Having an allergic reaction such as rash, hives, itching, swollen with or without having a fever. In addition to having trouble breathing, abnormal hoarseness or having swelling on the mouth, face, tongue or throat
  • Signs referring to liver problems such as dark urine, losing appetite, pain in the stomach, light-colored stools, yellow skin or eyes as well as vomiting. 
  • Trouble moving especially walking around
  • Having a very bad feeling of dizziness or fainting
  • Having shortness of breath, being overweight and having swelling in the arms or legs
  • Unusual vaginal discharge
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding (not due to normal menstrual periods) 
  • Pain while urinating
  • Passing urine more frequently than usual
  • Blurry eyesight
  • Trouble speaking 
  • General weakness
  • Problems in memory
  • Seizures
  • Mood changes or depression
  • The hair growth or hair loss
  • Headaches
  • Acne
  • Bloating
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Decreased sex drive 


Why do Pregnant Women need Progesterone Injections?


Scientists believe that progesterone plays a key role at the beginning of pregnancy. In fact, some doctors believe that pregnant women need extra progesterone injection as it helps to prevent potential miscarriage. Some studies show that giving progesterone to pregnant women who are at risk of miscarriage has helped them maintain a complete pregnancy. 

Ever since progesterone injection showed evidence of successfully helping women have a complete pregnancy, it has become a standard prescription given to women who had recurring or unexplained miscarriages. However, unfortunately, recent and more detailed studies have revealed that there is no evidence that progesterone actually helps women to stay pregnant.


What is the Birth Control Shot?


The depo shot is an injection that women take once every three months. It is a hormonal injection that helps prevent unplanned pregnancy by injecting progestin. It works similarly to the birth control bill by preventing ovulation and increasing the mucous development around the opening of the cervix. 


In order to ensure maximum effectiveness, women should get the shot every three months as recommended. If a woman has her shot on time, she will have a 1 in 100 chance to become pregnant within a year. On the other hand, women who do not take the shot exactly as recommended, the efficiency rate decreases to 94 percent. Committing to take the injection every 12 weeks is crucial to protect women against pregnancy. 


Does the Shot protect against Sexually Transmitted Diseases?


The birth control shot is just like other control pills that do not protect against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). On the other hand, using condoms every time during sex incredibly reduces the chance of getting pregnant as well as protecting against STDs. 


What are the Benefits of Progestin-only Pills?


  • They do not interfere with sex
  • They can be used after birth, right away, even if the woman is breastfeeding
  • They can reduce menstrual bleeding 
  • They may stop women’s periods too
  • They are not connected to increased risk of blood pressure and can be taken even during certain health conditions that, in general, prevent taking multiple pills at the same time. 


What are the Possible Side Effects of the Injection?


The progestin-only injections may lead to irregular bleeding. In some cases, women report gaining extra weight while taking progestin-only birth control pills. The average weight gained among these women less than five pounds. 


What are the known Health Benefits? 


The progestin-only injections protect against:

  • Risks of pregnancy
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Uterine fibroids

They can also help protect against:

  • Symptomatic pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Iron-deficiency anemia


They can amazingly reduce:

  • Sickle cell crises among women with sickle cell anemia
  • Symptoms of endometriosis


Things to Consider


Due to the increased risk of getting osteoporosis, women should decrease the use of Progesterone injections to two years only. They should focus on foods rich in vitamin D and calcium in order to boost their bone density. On the other hand, progesterone injections might increase the chance of developing breast cancer if they start taking it before the age of 35. Women who are breastfeeding may take progesterone injections, however, pregnant women or women who are trying to get pregnant or women who have any of the following factors should not use it:

  • High blood pressure
  • Breast cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Heart attack or stroke
  • Kidney disease
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Liver disease
  • Allergy to progesterone, progesterone-like drugs
  • Allergy to benzyl alcohol 
  • If they have had a miscarriage and their doctor suspect having some tissues still in their uterus
  • If they have or have had blood clots in their legs, lungs or any other spot in their bodies 
  • If their doctor suspect breast cancer or cancer of the genital organs


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