Patient Education Blog

Skyla IUD – New Birth Control Method Suitable for Women at Risk for Blood Clots

Dr. Stephan Moll writes… Skyla® is a new intrauterine device (IUD) birth control option, approved in February 2013 by the FDA.  Skyla® is like a small version of the Mirena® IUD; it releases low doses of the hormone progestin to help the IUD prevent pregnancy.  It has the following features:

  • It is a small, flexible plastic T-shaped device, smaller than the Mirena®.
  • It contains the progestin hormone called levonorgestrel, which is released at continuous daily rate over the 3 years the IUD can stay in place.
  • Given its small size, it is particularly suitable for women who have never had a child.
  • And given that that progestin-releasing IUDs do not increase the risk for blood clots [ref 1], it is a particularly attractive option in women with a history of blood clots (DVT, PE, etc) or a clotting disorder (= thombophilia or hypercoagulable states), such as factor V Leiden, the prothrombin (factor II) mutation, or protein C, S or antithormbin deficiency or the antiphospholipid antibody syndrome.  Thrombosis is not listed as a possible adverse outcome associated with Skyla® use.

Further resources

  • Commercial Skyla® website: here
  • Full Skyla® prescribing information: here
  • Clot Connect discussion of progestin-contraceptives: here


  1. van Hylckama-Vlieg A et al. The risk of deep vein thrombosis associated with injectable depot-medtoxyprogesterone acetate contraceptives or a levonorgestrel intrauterine device. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 2010(Nov);30:2297-2230.


Disclosure:  I have no conflict of interest.

Last updated:  June 3rd, 2013


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