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Etonogestrel Side Effects

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Oct 3, 2023.

Applies to etonogestrel: subcutaneous implant.

Serious side effects of Etonogestrel

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

Other side effects of Etonogestrel

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to etonogestrel: subcutaneous implant.


Very common (10% or more): Menstrual bleeding irregularities (37%), vaginitis (14.5%), breast pain (12.8%)

Common (1% to 10%): Leukorrhea, dysmenorrhea

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Urinary tract infection, dysuria, genital discharge, vulvovaginal discomfort, galactorrhea, breast enlargement, pruritus genital

Postmarketing reports: Ectopic pregnancy, breast discharge, ovarian cyst[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (24.9%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Migraine, somnolence

Postmarketing reports: Convulsions[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Weight increase (13.7%)

Common (1% to 10%): Increased appetite, weight decreased[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Acne (14.8%)

Common (1% to 10%): Alopecia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypertrichosis, pruritus, rash

Postmarketing reports: Angioedema, aggravation of angioedema and/or aggravation of hereditary angioedema, chloasma, seborrhea, urticaria[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Abdominal pain (10.9%)

Common (1% to 10%): Nausea, flatulence

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Constipation, diarrhea, vomiting[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Pharyngitis (10.5%)

Postmarketing reports: Rhinitis[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Insertion site pain, implant site complications, injection site reaction

Frequency not reported: Expulsion or migration of the implant[Ref]

Implant site complications include: bruising, slight local irritation, pain, itching, fibrosis at implant site, paresthesia or paresthesia-like events, scarring, hematoma, redness, swelling, and abscess.

Migration of the implants has rarely occurred to the chest wall, as well as within the vasculature including the pulmonary artery. Some patients with migration to the pulmonary artery reported chest pain and/or dyspnea, others were asymptomatic.[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Emotional lability, depression, nervousness, libido decreased

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Anxiety, insomnia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Back pain

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Arthralgia, musculoskeletal pain, myalgia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Hypersensitivity

Postmarketing reports: Anaphylactic reactions[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Influenza-like symptoms, pain, hot flush, fatigue

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Edema, pyrexia[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Clinically relevant rise in blood pressure[Ref]


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. UK Summary of Product Characteristics.

2. Product Information. Implanon (etonogestrel). Organon Pharmaceuticals. 2006.

3. Cerner Multum, Inc. Australian Product Information.

4. Product Information. Nexplanon (etonogestrel). Organon Pharmaceuticals. 2017.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.