How to check the ropes of the Navy.


As a contraceptive method, an intrauterine device (IUD) has many advantages. First, once installed, it can last for several years. It's reversible, too – when you're ready to start a family, your doctor can remove it.

The Navy has several disadvantages. But sometimes a problem arises: " missing lines ". This means that you cannot see the string attached to the IUD (like a tampon).

This article will help you learn how to test the strings of an IUD to make sure the IUD stays in place.

Why are the Navy ropes missing?

You may have a hard time finding your BMC strings for a number of reasons, for example:

  • Strings have moved – Usually when the IUD strings are missing, it simply means that the strings are pulled back into the cervical canal or uterus . You don't have to do anything about it, but the strings can easily be returned to the field of view during a pelvic exam. Your doctor will use a special instrument called a cervical cytology brush to find the strings and put them in place.
  • Pregnancy : The IUD is very effective, but not ideal. In very rare cases, the IUD strings can disappear due to pregnancy.
  • Perforation of the uterus : A perforated uterus is an opening in the uterus. This is a rare but serious complication that can occur with IUD use.
  • IUD Expulsion : The IUD strings may be missing if the entire device exits the uterus. Ejecting the IUD puts you at risk of getting pregnant. Because the loss of the IUD does not always cause symptoms, it can sometimes be helpful to check that the strings are still in place.
Get Medical Information / Emily Roberts

How to check the ropes of the Navy.

An IUD is a small T-shaped plastic device. The device is either wrapped in copper (like ParaGard ) or contains a progestin hormone (like Mirena ).

When your doctor inserts the IUD , the device remains inside the uterus and the IUD strings (which are made of plastic threads) will hang from the cervix, high in the vagina.

When checking the IUD strings, do the following:

  1. Handwashing
  2. Locate the cervix : Sitting or squatting, insert the index or middle finger into the vagina until it touches the cervix. Your cervix will be firm and elastic, like the tip of a nose.
  3. Feel the IUD strings – they should go through the cervix. If you can feel the strings, then your IUD is in place and should be working.
  4. Determine if the strings have moved : If the strings seem longer or shorter than last time, or if you feel a hard part of the IUD on your cervix , your IUD may have moved. In this case, your doctor will have to put it back in place.
  5. Use a backup method of birth control : If you are concerned that your IUD has moved, use a backup method of birth control until you see your doctor. You may be asked to take a pregnancy test if you haven't already. If your healthcare provider cannot find the cords during the pelvic exam, he or she may order imaging. Pelvic ultrasound is often used to locate the IUD (if it is not removed).

Do not try to push the IUD yourself. Also, never pull on the strings of the IUD, as this can cause it to move or fall off.

How often to check

IUDs that move out of place often do so in the first few months after insertion or during the menstrual cycle.

You can check your strings once a month, between periods. Since the chances of the IUD coming out during your period are higher, check your sanitary pads or tampons to make sure the IUD hasn't come out.

Important considerations for the IUD

If your IUD fails, you will need to make an appointment to have it removed. Don't take it off yourself.

The pregnancy

Most of the unintended pregnancies that occur in IUD users occur when the IUD slips out undetected.

The chance of pregnancy with an IUD inserted is extremely low. However, if this happens, you should remove the IUD as soon as you know you are pregnant.

Pregnant women who choose to leave the IUD in place should be closely monitored throughout their pregnancy. This is associated with an increased risk of pelvic infection, stillbirth, fetal growth retardation, miscarriage , and preterm labor and delivery .

Shorten strings

You can ask to have the IUD strings cut if your sexual partner can feel them. Please note that sometimes naval ropes get cut so much that you cannot test them. Make sure your doctor checks your IUD during your regular pelvic exam.

The myth of elimination

Some people mistakenly believe that they need to have the IUD removed if they change sexual partners. It is a myth. Your IUD will continue to work just as well no matter how many sexual partners you have.


The IUD is a safe and reliable method of birth control. However, all contraceptive methods have risks and drawbacks. One of the problems with IUDs is that they can sometimes move. Checking the IUD strings regularly can help you know if the IUD has moved.

If you can't find your IUD strings, or if the strings appear to be in a different location than the last time they were checked, contact your healthcare provider to have them checked. Never try to remove or reinstall the IUD yourself. And until you can see your doctor, be sure to use backup birth control.

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