A Far North woman is outraged that her 13-year-old daughter received a contraceptive implant at the Adolescent Health Clinic without her knowledge.



She was even more outraged to find that she had no right to know, and no legal right to demand its removal, despite what she said were serious physical and emotional side-effects.



"I was shocked, stunned and horrified when my daughter came home from school to tell me she had had the jadelle implant put in her arm, without my consent," she said.



She accepted that the practice was legal (although she was appalled by the law), having checked with her GP, but that was no consolation.

Advertisement



"My 13-year-old cannot go on a school trip, get body piercings or tattoos without parental consent.



"She cannot drive a car, buy alcohol or tobacco, or have sex, but she can have a contraceptive implant without my knowledge."



The publicly acknowledged side-effects of the implant included headache, nausea, mood changes, acne, pelvic pain, vaginal inflammation, varicose veins, hair loss, excess hair growth, ovarian cysts, a breast discharge, weight gain/loss, back and general pain. She did not specify the effects on her daughter, but said they had been marked.



Three weeks after the implant was removed, she got her "real" daughter back.



She also questioned how an implant could be approved without access to the child's medical history, and that of her family, adding that the clinic had also prescribed a contraceptive pill to her daughter.



The implant had been removed at her daughter's request - her parents discovered that they had no legal right to ask for its removal - "It was totally out of my control," she said - but the experience had caused the family deep distress.



"I was lucky that my daughter told me, otherwise I would never have known," she said.



"She thought she was doing the right thing, but she had a number of the side-effects mentioned, including a marked change in personality.



"How and why this centre can do this without a parent's knowledge is unbelievable," she added.



"To all parents of teenage girls, beware of what this centre can do. I wonder how many other 13-year-old girls have had this implant put in and have not told their parents."