An Alabama baby was allegedly born holding his mother’s Intrauterine Device — the contraceptive that was supposed to prevent her from getting pregnant.
A Facebook picture of the newborn, Dexter Tyler, has been shared over 71,000 times, reports the Daily Mail.
The mother, Lucy Hellein, said: “Dexter was definitely meant to be. His original due date was May 4th and even the doctor said “the force was strong with this one. Although he wasn’t planned, my family and I feel incredibly blessed.”
As explained by Planned Parenthood, an IUD is “a small piece of flexible plastic shaped like a T” which is “inserted into your uterus to prevent pregnancy.” It is “long-term, reversible, and one of the most effective birth control methods out there.”
The FDA has approved five different brands of IUDs: ParaGard, Liletta, Mirena, Skyla, and Kyleena.
There are two types of IUDs — copper and hormonal. Mirena, Lileetta, Skyla and Kyleena are hormonal, using the hormone progestin to prevent pregnancy.
Planned Parenthood explained them on their site:
The hormones in Liletta, Mirena, Skyla, and Kyleena IUDs prevent pregnancy in two ways: 1) they thicken the mucus that lives on the cervix, which blocks and traps the sperm, and 2) the hormones also sometimes stop eggs from leaving your ovaries (called ovulation), which means there’s no egg for a sperm to fertilize. No egg, no pregnancy.
The of IUD that Hellein was using was Mirena. However, just before Christmas 2016 she discovered that she was 18 weeks pregnant, meaning that Dexter was conceived only a few days after it was installed.
The device did not show up on an ultrasound, leading her obstetrician to suspect that it had probably fallen out. However, it had been hiding behind her placenta, which is how it allegedly ended up in Dexter’s hand when he was born.
IUDs are reputed to be effective 99 percent of the time. “IUDs are so effective because there’s no chance of making a mistake,” Planned Parenthood goes on to explain. “You can’t forget to take it (like the pill), or use it incorrectly (like condoms). And you’re protected from pregnancy 24/7 for 3 to 12 years, depending on which kind you get. Once your IUD is in place, you can pretty much forget about it until it expires.”
But Hellein says she is not taking any chances in the future. After giving birth to Dexter she reportedly opted to be sterilized by having her fallopian tubes removed.
Sources: Daily Mail, Planned Parenthood / Photo credit: Sarahmirk/Wikimedia Commons, Lucy Hellein via Daily Mail