We recently told you about how John Oliver was wrong about the Equal Rights Amendment. But even a broken clock is right twice. On a recent episode about medical device regulation, Oliver briefly tackled the topic of the safety issues with some forms of birth control, in this case, a coil inserted into the fallopian tubes, which is not reversible and acts as permanent birth control.
However, being a form of birth control, it can be difficult to call attention to their problems, lest you be accused of attacking birth control, waging a war on women, or being a misogynist. John Oliver can get away with it at least though, because he supports abortion.
In his episode, Oliver criticizes the FDA approval of “Essure”, noting that 15 years after approval, there were over 32,000 reports of problems with Essure, which have not been widely disclosed or disseminated. Pain includes, “perforation”, “genital hemorrhage”, and general pain. Oliver notes that intake nurse who was in charge of tracking pain, was able to change the answers on the survey.
The footage included comes from a movie called “The Bleeding Edge” about medical device manufacturers and undisclosed or underreported problems.
According to DrugWatch.com, a website which admittedly is run by attorneys looking to find leads for a lawsuit, “Essure side effects and complications can happen during or after the insertion procedure. They can be short-term or long-term. The FDA required Bayer to add a black box warning to the labeling information to let patients know about reports of organ perforation, coils moving to the abdominal or pelvic cavity, persistent pain and allergic reactions.
- Perforation of the uterus or fallopian tube
- Bladder or bowel injury
- Vaginal bleeding
- Pelvic or back discomfort
- Allergic reactions (hives, rash, swelling and itching)
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Device migration
In addition to these side effects, women reported a number of postmarketing adverse events, including hair loss, dental problems, autoimmune disorders and painful sex. These complications occurred in real-world practice and not in controlled clinical trials.”
You can read more about the safety of birth control here.