Tell me about your Depo Provera experiences, please!

About two weeks ago, I received my first depo shot. I was just wondering what some of you who have been on the shot for a longer time have experienced.

FWIW, I decided to try Depo because I know I don’t want kids for several years, and dislike taking the pill every day. It’s not difficult for me to remember, but it’s an annoyance I wanted to do without. I also feel that Depo is a little easier to trust b/c there really isn’t a human error factor, assuming you get your shots on time.

A question (maybe a bit TMI):

When I got my first shot, I was on the second day of my period. Period slowed down as per usual over the next few days, but the I continued to have that end of period brownish reddish dried-looking blood for a few more days. Now it’s getting heavier and bright red, like regular period blood. I know this is pretty normal, but I was wondering if anybody else has experienced this, and how long it took to go away. I know it’s not the same for everyone, I just want an idea of the average experiences with this contraceptive.

I gained 25+ lb, and all but completely lost my sex drive. I didn’t get a period for the almost two years I was on it, though.

One male checking in, so I can’t really relate specifics, but a friend was taking it and bled, sometimes very lightly and sometimes a little more heavily, for about six months.

I was on it for 2+ years. Very nice for the first year and a half or so.

I would be able to tell when it was time to get another shot, my hormones would go crazy the day before, much like PMS. Then as soon as I got a new injection, it was like a heroin addict, I’d feel all better! :slight_smile:

No period for 2 years was good. The downside was I lost my sex drive and have had quite a bit of trouble regaining it since (been about 4 years now).

TMI ALERT
Then things came to a grinding halt the last 3-4 months I was on it. I became clinically depressed and could barely function. I had a period that lasted for 6 weeks. I was a mess and found myself in the OB/GYN office sobbing and begging for something with less hormones. She lied and said all hormone-based birth control had the same levels as Depo and treated me like I was a crazy person. She was rude and everything. Needless to say I have not returned. No doctor will kick me in the teeth when I’m down and lie to me on top of it.

All I can say is I hope your body adjusts to it okay, which I’m sure it will. Just make sure you communicate any weird things to you doctor. And hopefully you get better treatment than I did.

That’s awful! I’ve been a little wacky lately, but no more than when I first started BC pills, so that will probably wear off. I don’t have a regular OB-GYN, because until Monday I didn’t have a job, nor insurance. I went through planned parenthood (who were really nice).

However, as of January 1, I will have insurance, so I have to go on a search for a new gyno - I loved the one I had at the campus clinic at college, but I can’t go to her anymore :frowning:

I’ve never been on it myself, but I know several people who are / have been on it. I have not heard any major complaints, but there is one thing I want to warn you of.

When you figure out what would be the perfect time to have children, STOP getting the shots. I know women who stopped getting the shots and had trouble trying to conceive for what seemed like forever. The hormone stays in your body for so long, even after the shots have been stopped.

I hope everything works out for you!

My boyfriend and I liked to call it Dep-privation.

I bled on and off for 3 months.

I was a complete bitch to everyone.

I had no interest at all in sex.

That’s why it prevented pregnancy. Who the hell would get near me! :mad:

I’ve heard the same thing. The literature from Planned Parenthood says the average it takes to get pregnant after going off of it is nine months.

I meant to give you this link to an older thread, in my post above. Just in case you don’t get enough responses here.

Purely anecdotal: everyone I know who took Depo (about 5 women) gained about 30 pounds. 'Round here they call it the “Depo 30.” Not that this proves anything, of course, I’m sure lots of women use it with no problems.

One of those women was a little psycho while on it. She finally quit when her hair started falling out. :eek:

Thanks!

My wife was on the shot for almost 5 years. Upside was she stopped having periods after about 3 months. Bad side was increase in weight, about 8 lbs p/yr, decrease in sex drive, and irregular cycles for about 9 months after her last shot. It took 19 months after her last shot to get pregnant, not that I minded the trying.

To those of you who gained weight - did your appetite increase, and thus you were eating more / worse stuff for you, or did it seem like your metabolism just slowed down? Also, how physically active were you? I ask because I’m planning to join a gym as soon as I get a few paychecks under my belt, probably in January. I’d like to prevent possible weight gain (and also lose some, maybe!). Also, it’s just good to be physically active :slight_smile: (I have to keep telling myself that to get myself to the gym regularly)

I have not taken it but my best friend has been on it for almost 3 years now and loves it. She has had no period to speak of since she started it and it has leveled her mood. She has had a decrease in sex drive but she readily admits she had an abnormally high sex drive so she has a perfectly healthy sex drive. Like other posters have mentioned, she also can tell when she needs to go in for another shot.

I’ve read a lot of the literature on how it takes a long time after you stop taking it to conceive and I think that’s the standard but I do know of two women who were told by their doc it was okay to wait another week to get the next round of their shot (and they were still w/in the window of time to do it) and they both became pregnant. I don’t think this is common but something to think about. Just make sure you know when to get the next one.

Oh, and I was speaking to a nurse once at a meeting about women’s health and she mentioned that the depo shot sometimes made it harder for a body to absorb calcium. She recommended taking pre-natal vitamins or extra calcium to make up for the deficiency. I don’t have a cite at the moment (sorry) but I mention it as I"m always harping on my friend to make sure and take her calcium! :slight_smile:

No cite needed, as planned parenthood told me the same thing, and also gave me a list of calcium-rich foods. Also, they gave me a chart telling me when I need to get my next shot.

I’d never been to Planned Parenthood before, but I must say: They Rock! They were very helpful and informative.

As with all of these things, it’s not impossible to get pregnant – a friend of mine got pregnant after her first shot. She had a beautiful, if unexpected, baby girl. It can happen.

I don’t want to risk three months of hormonal ups and downs myself, but some women love the stuff.

I had that same question, and it has always been explained to me like this: when you’re on BC, the hormones cause you to retain water more so than without the hormones. You just have to make sure you remain active and drink plenty of water, around 100 oz. a day. I gained a little, but not a lot. Since I’ve been off of it, I’ve gained far more weight. I just think a lot of it depends on your diet and activity levels. I haven’t been on BC for 3 or more years (ANY) and I feel so much better. But, I’m also actively trying to get pregnant.

Really, a varies from person to person. :slight_smile:

My Sis was on it the shot for about almost 3 years. She would never do it again. She gained about 30 pounds, never had a sex drive, and when she went off of it, she went through a really tough time. She was bleeding constantly, for many days at a time, and they were very heavy. She started having cramps and was sick for about 2 months after going off of it. She is finally getting back to normal, but she has had a rough way to go. So be careful!

I just went on Seasonale, and so far I really like it. I haven’t gained any weight, and I feel good. Just letting you know of another possibility.

my daughter has been on it off and on for the last 4 years. We think it is the best thing that ever happenned to her. It levels her hormones out. After a shot she cries for a day, and is then totally reasonable for 3 months. she has no periods on it and does not gain weight. For my daughter this is the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Also, another question - for those who stayed on the shot for years, but had horrible experiences, why on earth would you stay on it?! If I’m having an awful time of it six months from now, then I’ll stop and switch back to the pill.