Implantable depot preparations that slowly release a hormone over time offer convenience for patients, However, problems can arise that may reduce effectiveness or result in early removal.


Types of long-term hormonal implants:

(1) progestins for contraception

(2) testosterone


Usual site of insertion: inside of upper arm


Risk for complications at the time of insertion:

(1) inexperience or poor training of the inserter

(2) fibrosis at the insertion site

(3) infection at the infection site

(4) improper selection of a insertion site


Complications after the insertion:

(1) swelling

(2) irritation

(3) bruising

(4) infection

(5) nerve or vascular injury

(6) fibrosis


Problems from subtherapeutic dosing may occur if not removed as directed.


Difficulty for removal:

(1) migration

(2) deep insertion (not into subcutaneous tissue)

(3) fibrosis


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