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IUCD Location Scan

Sometimes it is necessary to check on the location of your IUCD or contraceptive implant to ensure that it is in the correct position. We can do this with a simple ultrasound scan, which will reveal where the IUCD is and whether there are any problems with it.

What are the indications or reasons for having the IUCD location scan?

Your IUCD will only be able to prevent you from getting pregnant if it is properly fitted. You should arrange an IUCD location scan to check the device if:

  • You or your doctor aren’t able to feel the strings of the IUCD, which should pass through your cervix into the top of your vagina. Your doctor will show you how to check the strings when you have the IUCD fitted.
  • There were any issues with the insertion and your doctor wants to check that the IUCD has been fitted correctly.
  • You have a condition such as fibroids that might have interfered with the insertion.
  • You don’t think the IUCD is working because you aren’t experiencing the expected effects or you think you might be pregnant.
  • You’re experiencing symptoms such as pain or bleeding that could be due to a misplaced IUCD.

How is the scan done?

The IUCD location scan is a trans-vaginal ultrasound. A thin ultrasound probe will be inserted a short way into your vagina so we can look at your cervix and uterus. If we can’t find the IUCD with the internal scan, we may try a trans-abdominal ultrasound. It doesn’t provide such detailed pictures, but it can help us to detect IUCDs that have travelled a long way from their intended position.

What preparation is required?

  • You should empty your bladder just before having a trans-vaginal scan
  • Wear clothes that are easy to remove from your lower half for the internal scan

What can this scan detect?

During the IUCD location scan we will check:

  • The location of the device, even if it has moved out of place
  • The position of the device if it has turned around
  • The position of the strings, which may be needed to remove the device
  • For any issues such as tears or bleeding that could have been caused by the IUCD if it has moved

If the IUCD has moved out of place, the ultrasound pictures will help if it needs to be removed. We will usually be able to take the IUCD out if there is a problem. It can then be replaced with a new device.

Is it easy to make an appointment?

We can easily arrange an appointment at short notice if you are having problems with your IUCD. We can perform scans on weekends or evenings if necessary. It’s important not to delay if you suspect that your contraceptive implant isn’t working. You should also avoid having sex or use another form of contraception until you know that you are protected.

What happens after the scan?

If the scan confirms that your IUCD is correctly fitted, you won’t need to do anything else until you decide to have it removed. However, if the IUCD location scan shows that there is a problem, you may need to have the device removed right away.

It is sometimes possible to leave the IUCD in place if it is still working and safe to do so. If this isn’t safe, we may be able to use instruments and the information from the ultrasound scan to remove the IUCD. Sometimes it will be necessary to remove the IUCD surgically, which would require a general anaesthetic. We can provide a full report on the IUCD location scan to help your gynaecologist with this.

Once the IUCD has been removed, you will need to decide if you want another one fitted or to choose another form of contraception. If you have another IUCD put in place, we can check that it has been fitted correctly with another IUCD location scan.


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Clinic Locations

Visit our clinic in Central London and Cheshire


137 Harley Street, London W1G 6BF
Nearest Underground Tube Stations

Baker Street
Regent’s Park
Great Portland Street


Alderley Edge Medical Centre, Talbot Road, Alderley Edge, Cheshire SK9 7HR
Nearest Overground Train Station

Alderley Edge