Blog of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research

Coming off Depo-Provera can be a woman’s worst nightmare

April 4th, 2012 by Laura Wershler

Need proof that women are sometimes desperate for information and support when it comes to quitting hormonal contraception? You need look no further than the 100 plus comments in reply to an old blog posting at Our Bodies OurselvesQuestions About Side Effects of Stopping Contraceptive Injections.  The comment stream – a litany of woes concerning women’s discontinuation of Depo-Provera – has been active since Nov. 2, 2009.

On March 29, 2012, Rachel, author of the post, wrote a follow-up piece in which she laments: “Although a quick internet search finds many women complaining of or asking about post-Depo symptoms, there isn’t much published scientific evidence on the topic.” Beyond research about bone density and length of time to return to fertility, little is known about the withdrawal symptoms women have been commenting about.

Depo-Provera is the 4-times-a-year birth control injection that carries an FDA “black box” warning that long-term use is associated with significant bone mineral density loss.  Never a fan, I made a case against this contraceptive in a paper for Canadian Woman Studies, published in 2005. The comments on the OBOS post indicate that many women took Depo-Provera without full knowledge of the potential for serious side effects while taking it, or of what to expect while coming off the drug.

Considering that Depo-Provera completely suppresses normal reproductive endocrine function, it is not surprising that many women experience extreme or confusing symptoms once stopping it. Take Lissa’s comment for example, posted on February 21, 2011:

Omg I thought I was tripping. I have been on depo for a year and stopped in jan. My breasts constantly hurt, I put on weight, have hot flashes, and sleeping problems. I pray everyday my cycle returns and stops playing with me. I only spot lightly.

Two and a half years after publication, the original article continues to garner monthly comments. I’ve read most of them and have yet to see one that offers concrete advice or a referral to resources that provide information and support to women looking for both. One such resource is Coming Off The Pill, the Patch, the Shot and Other Hormonal Contraceptives, a comprehensive, clinical-based guide to assist women transition back to menstruation and fertility, written by Megan Lalonde and Geraldine Matus.

Lalonde, a Holistic Reproductive Health Practitioner, and Certified Professional Midwife, helps women establish healthy, ovulatory cycles after using hormonal contraception. She says that women who’ve used Depo-Provera generally experience the most obvious symptoms and have the hardest time returning to fertility.  She finds that every client’s experience is different and will be affected by the status of their cycles before taking the drug, and their overall health. “It can take time to regain normal menstrual cycles, from a few months to 18 months, in my experience,” says Lalonde. “Some women have minimal symptoms while their own cycles resume, while others might have significant symptoms, including mood changes, unusual spotting and breast tenderness.”

The comments to the Our Bodies Ourselves blog post demonstrate that many women are not finding the acknowledgement and support they need to understand and manage the post-Depo transition. Some are disheartening to read, like this comment by Judy from April 12, 2011, and this recent one posted by Melani on March 21, 2012.

In my last re: Cycling post, I asked for input on the Coming Off the Pill Mind Map I created. I’ll be making a few revisions thanks to the thoughtful feedback readers have provided. I had assumed that this guide would be applicable to all methods of hormonal birth control but, after reading these women’s comments about their Depo-Provera experiences, it appears this contraceptive may require its own branch on the mind map.

  

394 Responses to “Coming off Depo-Provera can be a woman’s worst nightmare”

  1. Tiffany says:

    Hi…so I am 22 years old and I’ve been on Depo since I was 17. I’ve never really had any serious symptoms being on it besides that I had to take calcium pills because it lowered my vitamin D level, but when I tried to discontinue the injection when I was 19, I began to get heavy & very painful periods that I couldn’t handle, so I got back on the shot. I am now 100% sure I want to get off depo because I’m starting to believe that it will cause serious damage to my body over the years if I continue to take it. I would like to know is there any other serious symptoms I should prepare myself for.. I’m actually kinda nervous about it and I’m thinking about getting on a different type of birth control because my boyfriend and I isn’t ready to have an child yet.

    • Brita M says:

      I was on the shot for nearly 6 years and decided to quit last month. The experience has been awful. Like many others who have commented, I have been bleeding all month and it has been getting progressively worse. My eyes ache… I have blurry vision all of the time and see tiny flecks that I know aren’t actually there. My back is on fire with soreness, I have had cramps that make me extremely nauseous and hot and cold flashes. I cry almost every day and I’m constantly exhausted regardless of how much sleep I am getting. I also have been going through huge changes in appetite.

      The only potentially positive effect is I have lost a slight amount of weight, but I’m not reassured by this as I have been constantly bleeding and the nausea may be a contributing factor.

      To all of us going through this transition, hang in there. I know I have had more than one thought of going back on the shot but it is clearly very awful for our bodies. It has helped me to make my daily focus to intake more than enough water and eat lots of vegetables. While this may sound trivial, I swear it has helped me from crashing to the ground. The thought of a healthy balanced body definitely keeps me motivated!

      To those of you on the shot, please be aware of what you are putting into your body. I loved not having a period, not worrying about remembering my contraception, and my blemish-free skin, but long term this shot is damaging and coming off of it is only a glimpse of its huge influence on our bodies.

      <3

  2. Elle says:

    I have had a strange experience with Depo and finally decided to get off of it. I got my first shot in September 2012 because I had a very irregular period (every two weeks – due to severe stress) and read that the Depo shot will stop the bleeding. Well was I wrong!! I got the first shot and basically it turned into a complete mess. For the next year, I continued to get my shot every three months, on the websites’ advice that it may take up to 6 months to fully stop the bleeding. In my case, over the course of 13 months, I literally had bleeding every day for 11 of the months. My doctor finally recommended I stop getting the shot as it may be too strong for my body. It is now four months since my last shot and the bleeding finally stopped a month ago (when my next shot would have been due.)I have not gotten a period yet, no bleeding at all in fact, yet my breasts are tender, especially my nipples which feel almost raw, and I have a mild but dull lower back ache. Everything the Depo shot claims to do, seems to have done the opposite for me (other than preventing pregnancy.) I actually lost weight, and had bad acne and constant bleeding with the shot. I would never recommend this form of birth control to anyone.

  3. Kathleen says:

    I’ve been using depo for 14 years. No problems I love it and no monthly bleeding for 14yrs. Don’t think I’ll ever go off of it.

  4. samantha says:

    I am going through it now and I will say it is complete Hell! I was on it for 8 years and while I was not sexually active I stopped. In order for me to get back on birth control I had to have a period though but I didn’t think it was a big deal. My last shot was in January and I’m having my period now. It has lasted 2 weeks! It was an okay 3 day period followed by about 6 days of spotting while having cramps and headaches now I’m on day 5 of a heavy period with terrible cramps. I wouldn’t wish this on anyone.

    • Jenna says:

      I have come off the injection after about 11 years – I was never advised of the recommended 2 year limit. I never had a problem on it except weight gain when I gave up smoking. My last injection was due September 2013 had sore breasts from that week continuing until today even wearing a bra kills! In the last week & a half I started getting massive headaches, light sensitivity, my eyes feel like they will explode, horrific cramps, heavy & then light bleeding, huge back pain, fatigue & insomnia… It’s insane! No one tells you about this! …..reading about it now wonder if depo has had an impact on my bout of depression, weight gain, and decrease in libido.

      • Mya says:

        I could have written this, Jenna. Except I was on it for 13 years. I was due for a shot the first week of January, and I’m absolutely miserable now. Not miserable enough to get another shot to make it all stop, but pretty close.

        I wish I had known about the 2 year recommendation, and frankly I’m pretty pissed off that my doctor didn’t tell me about it. It should be up to me to decide if the serious risks from long-term use are worth it or not, and for me they aren’t.

        As soon as this round of random bleeding stops, I’m having an IUD put in.

        • Leslie says:

          Mya – I just read your comment. It is amazing and appalling that young women could be put on Depo – and for such a long period (no pun intended) of time.

          However, what really to to me was when you said that when you stopped the random bleeding you would have an IUD put in.

          Your body needs a break – especially if the IUD has synthetic hormones. If you are sexually active then tell your partner to take responsibility for awhile with condoms. If you are not sexually active… just give your body time to heal and recuperate.

      • jenni says:

        i have also had the problems with the eyes. but im wondering, do you know if people can get a rash from stopping the depo? i was on it for about 6 yrs. was due last week for my next dose. but after an online search i was like forget that! anyway, i noticed a rash today, and it spread pretty quickly after noticing it. by time i got to the doc it had spread alot. she didnt think it was from stopping. but with all the little info out there who knows if she could be so sure. and i was never aware of the 2 yr limit either.

  5. lindsay says:

    Hi. i got one depo shot back in march and I thought not having a period would be great but it honestly scared me so i didnt get another shot. i wanted to wait until i got my cycle back to get on another form of bc. i had sex a week ago(saturday) and got my period for the first time the following day(sunday) it was a normal cycle only a few days but now i am craving a lot of sweets and have incredibly sore breasts especially my nipples. is this a hormonal thing due to my cycle returning or is this a cause for concern of pregnancy?

    • Natalie says:

      Hey, i got my first depo shot two months ago, and its been soo much better than any pill but at the same time i feel like I’ve lost my natural rhythm. I’ve been on other pills etc since i turned 18, I’m now nearly 22, so I’ve decided not to get my next shot. Really should have thought of this before getting it in the first place! Did it take you 6 months to get your cycle back to normal?? Seems like ages, hope its not longer for me. Hopefully because i only got one shot it wont take ages. Was considering taking Vitex, herbal cycle remedy, as it helps get a regular cycle back but it also increases fertility and I’m not looking to get pregnant at all. Is the vitex a good idea?

      • jenni says:

        i have used this shot three diff times in my life.. i first came off of it at 18. was on it a year or two. not sure how long it took for a “normal” cycle to start again. but it did take 13 months to get preg. so thats probably when it became completely normal. the second time my period started within a month of stopping, but it took 8 months to get pregnant. now i have just come off it after being on for 6 yrs. was due for next shot last week, but havent gotten period yet. not looking to get preg, just did research and decided it was to damaging to the body. once again, i was never told about the 2 yr limit. why is this a running theme? it just aint right not telling people this.

        • MJ says:

          Ladies ladies ladies, I will be 34 in September and last year was my second time taking the depo in my life, I was due for a shot in January and decided not to get it I am still hurting my breast are super sore no weight gain well just a little but I have a lower abdominal pain as well wondering if and I was just wondering if anyone else is experiencing this problem as well. and my doctor did not inform me of the to your limit either I learned that from my mother just two weeks ago. in fact, I as well thought I might be pregnant for some reason I don’t feel like not however it’s just very strange and the side effects of coming off of this are very brutal! I know and I believe as women this is our choice but I believe the Depo Provera shot should be illegal or band something has got to give these doctors seem to give us a notification it’s our bodies not theirs

        • j says:

          I been on and off depo thru two children.my last depo was due 2 months ago.i been bleeding 7 days on 2 days off and right back to.full out period for 2 months now it hurts my body,back-neck, cramps,mood swings its important to now what your.bodys going thru, i.thought i was loosing my health,it has been helpful to know I’m not the only one going thru it.and the amount of money saving.yes there has been sharp pain in my eye and head area just hoping to get regular again-keep on the calcium very important

  6. Auburn says:

    I had been on Depo for 4 years.15-19yrs old. No problems. I had tried pills prior and had many unfavorable side effects. Stopped using depo and did not have any issues. I was able to conceive my first daughter without issue. Went back on it. Great. Stopped a year and a half after to have my other daughter.. no problems. I had tried the implinon (sp?) SCARY!! I had such bad side effects! ! A new set of symptoms every 3 days! Severe cramping, irritability, migraines, joint pain etc..etc. Airway, went back to depo and loved it! But I am 28 now and got “fixed” with Ensure. Stopped depo and I have had sore breasts, fatigue, headaches and now my left leg and ankle has swollen. With all blood work done and everything fine I can only guess this is why. Anyone else have this?

    • Erin says:

      I am also 28 and have been off Depo for 21 days now and I am extremely irritable , have had tons of headaches and fatigue and my breasts are extremely sore to the point where I can’t even be comfortable in a bra.

      • Brittany says:

        I have been on the shot for 5 years recently got off it in January 19 and started taking the pill and since that my breast also get so sore to wear bra or to wear tighter shirt while not wearing bra and my first period was only for 2 days and I was never advised about any side effects at all!

  7. katelyn says:

    Hey, I was on the depo shot for 2 years. I started it because I was having irregular periods,(I was not sexualy active). I am 18 now and am sexually active, and when I finally met the right guy I stopped the depo. Well now I have these really bad withdrawals. When I wake up go to be, or even in the afternoon I get these bad dry heaves. I get headaches, trouble sleeping even though I an tired beyond tired, I get hot and cold flashes, extreme cramping and still no period, just spotting. This is truely hell, I end up crying everyday from the withdrawals.

  8. Katelyn says:

    Hey, I was on the depo shot for 2 years. I started it because I was having irregular periods,(I was not sexualy active). I am 18 now and am sexually active, and when I finally met the right guy I stopped the depo. Well now I have these really bad withdrawals. When I wake up go to be, or even in the afternoon I get these bad dry heaves. I get headaches, trouble sleeping even though I an tired beyond tired, I get hot and cold flashes, extreme cramping and still no period, just spotting. This is truely hell, I end up crying everyday from the withdrawals. Its just the worst.

  9. Sam says:

    I got the depo last March maybe around the 15th. I was suppose to get my second in June, but I decided not to because all of the scary stuff I read online. My friend talked me into it because that was the birth control she was using at the time, and I thought not having a period wouldn’t be so bad. The whole three months I was on the depo I had a period, and then come July I didn’t and then I had one in August then from September till now Aunt Flow still hasn’t come to visit me? I’m concerned that its do to the depo and I’m also concerned that do to the depo I’m not going to be able to conceive one day.

  10. Auburn says:

    I would not worry that you haven’t had your period Sam. It can take up to the first 12 weeks or Longer to stop your period. It also takes some time to go back to the way it was.(at least 12 more weeks) Your body was just getting used to it and changing then you went off of it right away asking it to change again. I am almost 30 and it is taking longer for my body to adjust to that change again. That is also after using it for 4 years having my oldest. Using it for 1 year then having my youngest. I never had any problems conceiving or during or after pregnancy. I have used it for 5 years after that. I had the Essure put in this year and came off depo. My body is having a harder time adjusting but I am older than I was and after 2 kids and on/off bc I can’t imagine it would be like I was 18. It was a great form of bc though. I never worried. I never had to remember a pill each day. I didn’t have a period. Great! It took from July 2013 to Nov 2013 to get a regular period. I have never known anyone to not be able to conceive after using depo. Thyroid problems can be the main cause for that. Hormone fluctuations after taking any bc will happen after.

  11. Kirsten says:

    I was on depo for 7 years 2006-2013. I stopped in october (when my last shot was due by) and started on the pill because I wanted to try and regulate my period as fast as I could because my husband and I decided to start a family. Well after less than 2 full months of the pill I stopped it because my breast were too sore. Since Thanksgiving of 2013 I have spotted periodically and never for more than 4 days. Well for the past 10 days I have been spotting and its really annoying! I’ve always had headaches and I was diagnosed with narcolepsy so my symptoms while on depo cant really be pointed to being caused by depo. I just really hope it doesn’t take me more than 6 months to conceive.

  12. Tebza says:

    I have been on the 3 months injection for 1 year 4months and only started seeing my period after 3months. However ny periods are not normal as compared to prior contraceptive. They are heavy with period pains everyday, yet I use to have period pains only on the first day of my period. The other thing is that they come every two weeks. We are trying to conceive and would like to know if this is normal.

  13. Kerry says:

    Hi,
    I was on the depo for 5 years and it was perfect! No periods, no weight gain etc! Well I found the man of my dreams and heard that it can take up to a year to become pregnant so having spoke to my boyfriend we decided I shouldn’t have another shot. That was back in June last year. My depo was due 6/8/13 and my nurse said that it’ll be out my system (as in unprotected) 20/8/13. I still haven’t had any sign of Mother Nature it’s been 5 months and lately (since December) my breast have become tender but no where near painful like everyone else is describing. I did a pregnancy test back in October but it was negative.
    As the tender breasts aren’t as painful as what’s being described here I was wondering if it is infact due to the depo or not.

  14. Heather says:

    I have been on depo for a year , and after my first moth i would have a light cycle lasting three to four days every two to three months . I had previous troubles gaining any weight before the shot . I weighed 95 pounds to start but threw the yr on the shot gained eleven pounds . And my last six months on the shot I started battling constant tender raw breast and nausea to the point i kept thinking i some how had gotten pregnant . So i finally told my dr at my next shot apt in nNov and we decided to skip the shot and started pills that day & as of today i have been nauseas raw feeling nipples and bleeding for twenty seven days now !

  15. Auburn says:

    Hi Kerry! It is not necessarily because of the depo that your breasts are tender but more because your body is hormonally re- balancing out. You are going to have fluctuations after discontinuing use of ANY birth control option especially after so much time. No worries. It goes away. :)

  16. Christine says:

    Ive been on depo since October an I got the shot again yesterday, January 20th . So I was thinking that in the next 3 months from today I want to get off depo because I’ve gained weight an also having irregular bleeding an I don’t really like it. . So if I wait like 3 months from today which would be in April , Would the shot be finished ? Also, if a guy were to cum in me , like after the shot is finished , would I be able to have kids or would I have an ectopic pregnancy ? Also when should the depo not be so much effective anymore ? would it be like 12-14 weeks after I got it? I would really like to know this because I’m kinda scared, an nervous bout this lol. & even if I don’t get the shot in the future it won’t be effective on me right ?
    Sorry for all the questions
    Thanks for your help, I really appreciate it!

    • Laura Wershler says:

      Christine, If you stop the Depo shot you will need to use another form of birth control when the 3-month time period from your last shot is up. Although it may take a few months your cycle should return to normal. If you decide to switch to the BC pill, you may continue to experience hormonal upsets like irregular bleeding, sore breasts or nausea for awhile. Don’t be concerned about not being able to have kids.

      If you do not switch to another hormonal method you will find helpful information about what you may experience post-Depo at this post:
      http://menstruationresearch.org/2013/04/11/stopping-depo-provera-why-and-what-to-do-about-adverse-experiences/

  17. Considering you are talking about Advocare I thought you might be interested to know there is an article on youtube about the supplements.

  18. Frances Price says:

    I have been on Depo for 13 years. Within this last year I’ve had very painful & debilatating cramps. So bad I was considering going to the ER. Also recently the spotting is more often, irregular, and sometimes heavy and followed by digestive problems. I’m either constipated or have diahrea! Prior to that there was little to no bleeding and minimal cramping. Purposely missed my depo appt last week. I think I need to find a new bc method but my hubby says it could all be a coincidence. I plan to see the dr soon and get something o/t depo.

  19. kristy says:

    Im due for my next shot in a couple of days.been on it for a year everything is fine but i have gained atleast 25 pounds.im going to switch to pills again because i never gained any weight on them.i was just wondering if anyone has switched like that and lost the weight after stopping the shot?

  20. Delfina says:

    I was on depo for a year January 2012 Threw January 2013 I was on my period for 2mobths straight when I was on the shot then I had a month period. I gained weight. I regret taking the depo shot. My cycle was normal just perfect and now it’s just all bad I’ve been on my period for 3 months now. I had 2 normal periods after off the shot then my last period it hasn’t stopped yet and that was in November and it’s now February .. Has anyone had their period last 3 months or know somone that had their period last 3months after Depo?

  21. Taylor says:

    I just stopped getting the depo early this month, after about 3 years of being on it. It seems like the easy way to go because it was supposed to be really effective and I only had to remember it every 3 months – which was great in my teenage mind. Now, 18, I decided to come off of it. I know that my average lifestyle didn’t contribute to the 20lbs I’ve gained since I started. I’m sick of not having a period, it feels unnatural to me, and I don’t like the idea of hormones being shot through my muscle. I didn’t really think the decision through when I started, but I’m glad I’ve decided to stop now. I think I’m going to switch to the FemCap, I’ve read a lot about it and seems like a nice way to go – and I think it’ll be even more effective than it says it will because I won’t just be using this but I’m going to make sure a condom is used as well. Anyways, I’m going through what feels like hell. I’ve been trying to find information about what happens after I stop taking the depo and thank the lord I found this site. My head hurts nonstop, I get hot flashes, my brain is out of control (I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, I no longer take medication bc that route didn’t work with me, but I’ve been OK for a very long time and this past month has been the worst rollercoaster with more downs than ups.), I feel sick, I feel over emotional, I’m tired all the time but I can’t sleep. I’m having such a difficult time trying to deal with my second semester of college and my personal changes and it’s just really hard. I just spent the last hour crying in the shower because I just don’t know what’s going on with me. I wish I never started the depo, this is torture. Why wouldn’t they tell you what will happen after using this? They even say that you shouldn’t use this longer than 2 years, so why the heck wouldn’t they at least warn you?!

  22. Lauren says:

    I was on Depo for probably 3 years, my last injection was due June 2013. Got my period Sept 2013, and have been on it since. It ebbs and flows between heavy and light, but I’m SO SICK of buying tampons. Anyone have any good news for me? I would never wish this drug upon anyone. Besides the weight gain while I was taking it, it was great, but due to a spiritual experience, I decided that artificially forcing hormones through my body was unnecessary. I hate this. Coming off of Depo is the worst. I just want it to end.

  23. Harata says:

    I was on the depo for a year and it was horrible. I started spotting from the get go and then I had what I called “the stop and go” which basically just meant 2-3days on and 1day off till after about the 6/8month mark it then finally stopped completely (If being an efficient birth control means making it almost impossible to have sex for weeks on end and gaining a ton of weight then DING DING we have a winner).
    SINCE I’VE STOPPED I’ve had these side effect:
    - emotional instability
    - tender sore nipples
    - lots of crying
    - constant bleeding(for 4months now)
    - not being able to go to sleep despite exhaustion
    - tiredness

    I just want a normal period, I’m at a stage in life where I want to have children and I’m unsure about my fertility at this stage. I DO NOT RECOMMEND GETTING THE SHOT!

    • Laura Wershler says:

      Harata, You’ll find some information related to getting your fertility back in this other post I wrote explaining post-Depo experiences. You may find it of value: http://menstruationresearch.org/2013/04/11/stopping-depo-provera-why-and-what-to-do-about-adverse-experiences/

    • Delfina says:

      I don’t have the same side effects as you but the oneI have is the bleeding I’ve been bleeding almost four months. sometimes it’s really dark and some days it’s light. I just want my period back to the way it was before the shot . It sucks I was on the shot for a year I’ve been off it for a year and 2 months and my period hasn’t returned Normal yet. I’m hoping it will soon tho.

    • Delfina says:

      I don’t have the same side effects as you but the oneI have is the bleeding I’ve been bleeding almost four months. sometimes it’s really dark and some days it’s light. I just want my period back to the way it was before the shot . It sucks I was on the shot for a year I’ve been off it for a year and 2 months and my period hasn’t returned Normal yet. I’m hoping it will soon tho….

  24. Samantha Ward says:

    I have been having the depo for 13 years, i stopped for a short period of time in the middle but continued. I have now realised the effect it has on my moods, so had my last injection December 2013. I await what comes next as for the full 13 years i didnt have any periods!
    It just cant be good for you and i am giving my body a break to see what my actual normal cycle is like and will NEVER be taking the depo injection again !!

  25. jeannie says:

    I started the depot in may 2013 and i have been bleedin all year! I stopped once in june for one month and began again. In july !! It was horrible. Non stop menustration for months! I had a shot again in september and still i bled. I decided nott to go back for the 3rd shot. I. Thought the bkeedin had stopped when it stopped in january. 2014 but then i started again. Two weeks ago. HEAVY!! HELP!!!!! It did the reverse affect on me. I lost weight indtead of gained and my hair fell out!!

  26. Noah-Lee says:

    Ihad gotten one shot & then went off of the depo & everything went back to normal.. However, now ihave been on it for 1year & 2months. Ihad previously decided to go off of it because the clinic that injects me recommended ionly stay on the depo for a maximum of one year. Icame online to Read up on the effects of coming off it it, & yall are terrifying me!

  27. Night says:

    I was on depo for 10 years I had (massive) weight gain and cronic depression I didn’t put it down to the injection. infact I was very nieve … I stopped it about august last year due to my boyfriends research about it…now I am off it my periods are irregular and cramps that take my breath away I’ve been on my period for 3 weeks to the day. I was never told that you are only meant to be on it two years. Girls I hate periods and babies scare me lol but that shit was slowly killing me. I am unsure if my body will recover I felt great for a while on it an then slowly the effects started kicking in depression, weight gain, irratibility…. Even felt like I had no energy in the end drained all the time. I guess. Our bodie work differently but I would becareful if you want kids later on. Xx good luck!

  28. Kelly says:

    I started depo 18 years ago. 11 years ago, I missed a shot and within 1 month, I was pregnant. Afterwards, I got back on it. I was never made aware of the 2 year recommendation until recently when I changed doctors. She ordered a bone density screen and a change in birth control. My results show that I am at the end stages of osteopenia, beginning of osteoporosis. Because my husband and I are positive we don’t want any more kids, he opted for a vasectomy. My last shot was due Feb 7th, so I am just near a month off the hormone, and I don’t feel any different. I have had a few extra headaches recently, but nothing else. I’m a little worried reading all of these posts about what’s in store for me. But I’m also worried that I haven’t experienced any of these. Is it possible I did too much damage from being on the depo 18 years? Or is it still too soon to tell?

  29. Kelly says:

    I have been on depo for nearly 6 years and i have decided to come off it. Would of been having my 3 month injection next week but I have cancelled. I am dreading my 1st period though even though it is normal to have them, but because i havent had one for 5+ years. I also have polycystic ovaries syndrome and worried that i might have fertility problems. Help!!

  30. chrissy says:

    i literally put on 30 lbs while on depo. i was on it for two years. i am now prescribed a mini pill called camilla. i have yet to try it. at this rate, i am considering just not to take it and take my chances. gaining all this weight for the amount of sex that i have (which isn’t much) isnt worth it to me anymore.

  31. Dwell says:

    Hi all – its been a while since my last post. I was on Depo for 16 years and didn’t have any side effects. March 2013 I went to my GYN visit and my doctor told me to stop taking the depo due to the fact that I was on it too long. He gave me a bone density test and said that my numbers were not good for a 47 year old. My last shot was April 2013. Since coming off of Depo I am sick to my stomach, hair falling out, acne, back pain, teeth and gum issues, depression, angry mood, bone stiffness, blurred vision, hot flashes, night sweats, frequent urination, smelly urine. My doctor actually said that i am going through perimenopause because of my age. while on the depo i didn’t have a period and i still don’t have a period don’t know if it will ever come back. Although as strange as it might sound i am still ovulating each month. My doctor want to put me on the pill due to the fact that he says i can still become pregnant. After what i am experiencing now i don’t want anything in my system. Please stay away from Depo it will screw you up!!

  32. [...] Provera Withdrawal – A Woman’s Worst Nightmare Coming off Depo-Provera can be a woman’s worst nightmare Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInTumblrRedditPinterestEmail Filed Under: Birth Control Side [...]

  33. Night says:

    Hey all know I recently posted but its disgusting I’m 25 …I actually feel so sick with it and the dr’s are doing nothing about it, visited the dr today….They did nothing about it I have been off depo since last Jan they said so its been a year and 2 months… I feel like I am going through what (Dwell) described ….perimenopause at 25 I can’t describe how awful I have felt since I come off and it does not seem to be letting up life is awful right now….Was on it for 10 years.

  34. Kayla says:

    Hi! I’m 20, and I was on Depo for about 5 years, mostly because I would have super painful cycles. Endometriosis runs in my family so that’s most likely why. I’ve been off it for about 4 months. I’ve always gotten migraines, but for the past 2 weeks I have had SUPER sore breasts, and both my breasts nipples have gotten a slight bit larger. I’ve also gotten waves of what most would describe as “morning sickness” except it comes at night. I haven’t gotten a period or spotting at all yet, however I am sexually active. I’ve taken multiple pregnancy tests which all come back negative. I just feel like a preteen hitting puberty for the first time. This sucks.

  35. Megan says:

    Im 17 years old and I got on the depo shot because of irregular periods. I took two shots and I didn’t go back for my 3rd one because I had forgotten. Now im having awful stomach pains. I haven’t had a period in two months. Im so confused.

  36. Samone says:

    I was excited about the depo when I received it in Feb.2013 and after 3 months of irregular bleeding I didn’t really have any problems until now I got my last shot in Nov & besides the random cramping since my last shot I didn’t get my period back until 4 days ago but I’ve been passing little clumps and having excruciating cramps and back pain nausea and no appetite is this normal should I talk to my doctor should I just sit it out and let it past help please

  37. Catina says:

    Hello
    I am 24 and have been on depo since I was 18. I don’t have my period. My self and my husband decided that we would stop birth control and whatever happens happens. My last shot was Dec 2013. Since my shot ran out March, I have had horrible headace, sore boobs and no period. I took a pregnancy test to be sure and it was negative. I will NEVER get back on depo.

  38. Alexis says:

    Im 18, I got the Depo shot in December and I bled from January up until March. I didnt get back on the Depo shot in March and Im still bleeding and its April. My doctor put me on the pills to stop the bleeding over 2 weeks ago and it still hasnt stopped.Wondering when the bleeding will stop because its been a month since Ive been off the shot?

  39. Nichole says:

    I’m 23 started depo 4 years ago. My shot was due February and I decided to stop taking it due to constant nervousness. Now that I’ve stopped the nervousness has gone away, but my breasts are not only sore they are swollen and like a rock. My head is killing me and I can’t seem to wake up enough to do anything.

  40. Madison says:

    I am 17 years old I was on the depo shot for a year and stopped in December. I started taking the pill immediately after and ever since I have been an emotional wreck! I keep crying and get so stressed out so fast. I had to start seeing a psychiatrist but I’ve only gone a couple times and isn’t working. I never was anything like this until I stopped taking the shot.

  41. BAM says:

    I took 1 depo shot and didn’t like it. My 3 months is up next week, and I am freaking out about what is going to happen side effect wise? Anyone have any idea the consequences if you just took it once?

    • Noah-Lee says:

      The first time itried depo ionly got one round & ihad noo complications other than ibled for maybe 2 or 3 weeks. Other than that my cycle returned as per usual.

  42. Robin says:

    I had been on Depo a year and went off it about a month ago. I loved not getting a period, but since I’m not having sex anyway and I don’t like the thought of injecting hormones, I went off. My breasts and nipples hurt like many mentioned, had a three week period, spotting now, but the worst is my brain. I’m nervous, obsessive and feel like I’m loosing my mind. I’m having “morning sickness” type symptoms in the afternoon and haven’t been able to eat dinner for three days. I can hardly stand myself and broke down crying tonight. I also don’t see it as a coincidence that in the last year I’ve needed 4 cavities filled. Prior to being on the shot I had one cavity my entire life. Don’t do it ladies. Going without a period isn’t worth all this.

  43. Laura Wershler says:

    Thanks for the shout out! Hope you’ll comment on our blog regularly and share links with friends.

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