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"Several appointments just to get the contraception I needed"

About: University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust

(as the patient),

I went to Bristol Sexual Health clinic in order to get more contraceptive pills of the pill I had been on for 6 months. I thought going there would be time saving. Once I was seen the nurse asked me a lot of questions. My doctor never normally does, including things about my relationship etc which I thought was quite good as it's an opportunity for them to flag abusive relationships.

However one of the questions she asked me was whether I had ever had a 'bad headache'. I replied with something like 'no not really, I don't get headaches often and haven't had a bad one in years'. She then asked me questions about a headache that I can barely remember from 8/9 years ago and decided on the limited information I could remember that it must have been a migraine and I was no longer allowed the pill I had been on. She then asked if I would be happy to try a progesterone only pill. I was concerned about this as I had been on the implant with similar hormones for 8 months and reacted very badly to it. However I left agreeing to try.

I took about 20 days worth of the pills before every bad symptom I had with the implant came back and I decided I wasn't doing it to myself again. A month later I went back again to a different nurse and explained my situation. She again said she wouldn't give me my original pill and perhaps my only option was the coil. I decided to go away and think about it. I then booked the soonest appointment with my doctor (3 weeks) for a 3rd opinion and she was happy to give me my original pill with the agreement if I suffered any bad headaches I was to come back. I was really happy with this outcome as it had taken me a few years to find a contraception I was happy with, its just a shame it took 5 months. I feel like they should listen to the patient's opinion and experience a bit more, as I never would have mentioned one headache I can barely remember from years ago if Id have known the trouble it would cause!

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