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IntroductionIn June 2021, high-profile testimonials in the media about pain during intrauterine device (IUD) procedures in the UK prompted significant discussion across platforms including Twitter (subsequently renamed X). We examined a sample of Twitter postings (tweets) to gain insight into public perspectives and experiences.MethodsWe harvested tweets posted or retweeted on 21–22 June 2021 which contained the search terms coil, intrauterine system, IUD or intrauterine. We analysed the dataset thematically and selected illustrative tweets with the authors’ consent for publication.ResultsFollowing deduplication and screening, we included 1431 tweets in our analysis. We identified testimonials with descriptions of varied pain experiences. Twitter users reported that clinicians had not warned them that pain could be severe or explained the options for pain relief. Some raised concerns about pain being minimised or dismissed and linked this to the management of women’s pain in medicine more broadly. Twitter users described connecting to an online community with shared experiences as validating and used this as a springboard for collective action.ConclusionsWhile we acknowledge the limitations of our sample, this study highlights important perspectives and accounts relating to pain during IUD procedures. Our findings attest to the need for strategies to improve the patient experience for those opting for IUD as a clinical priority. Further research should explore IUD users' experiences, expectations and wishes around pain management.

Original publication





BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health



Publication Date