Body composition and bone mineral density in users of the etonogestrel-releasing contraceptive implant

Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2015 Dec;292(6):1387-91. doi: 10.1007/s00404-015-3784-0. Epub 2015 Jun 19.


Purpose: There is scarce information about bone mineral density (BMD) and body composition (BC) among users of the etonogestrel (ENG)-releasing implant.

Aims: To evaluate BC and BMD in ENG-releasing implant users as compared to copper intrauterine device (Cu-IUD)-users.

Methods: A prospective study was conducted on 75 users of both contraceptive methods. BMD was evaluated at femoral neck (FN) and lumbar spine (LS) (L1-L4) and BC at baseline and at 12 months after insertion.

Results: The mean (±SD) age was 30.4 ± 6.8 and 29.8 ± 8.4 years and body mass index (kg/m(2)) was 24.9 ± 4.1 and 24.6 ± 3.5 in ENG-releasing implant- and Cu-IUD-users, respectively. ENG-releasing implant users did not show significant differences on BMD at the LS and FN at 12 months of use. Furthermore, ENG-implant users had an increase in body weight at 12 months (p < 0.001) and an increase of 2 % in the percentage of body fat, when compared with Cu-IUD users. There was a significant increase in lean mass in ENG-implant users at 12 months (p = 0.020).

Conclusions: No significant changes of BMD were seen after the first year of use among the ENG-releasing implant-users, albeit an increase of weight and fat mass was seen when compared to Cu-IUD users.

Keywords: Body composition; Bone mineral density; Etonogestrel-releasing implant.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Absorptiometry, Photon
  • Adult
  • Body Composition / drug effects*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Bone Density / drug effects*
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female / administration & dosage
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female / adverse effects*
  • Desogestrel / administration & dosage
  • Desogestrel / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Femur Neck / diagnostic imaging
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Intrauterine Devices, Copper / adverse effects
  • Intrauterine Devices, Medicated / adverse effects*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / diagnostic imaging
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies


  • Contraceptive Agents, Female
  • etonogestrel
  • Desogestrel