(WRIC) — A group calling themselves the E-Sisters held a daylong protest outside Bayer Pharmaceuticals main headquarters in Whippany, New Jersey.
They were protesting a controversial birth control device called Essure.
Sales of the embattled birth control device have been halted everywhere except the U.S.
Hoping to change that, the protestors went straight to the manufacturer today demanding a recall.
The women chanting recall Essure and holding signs that read boycott Bayer want the device banned in the U.S.
Essure consists of two nickel coils inserted into the fallopian tubes to block pregnancy.
However, 8News uncovered the FDA has received more than 26,000 complaints about the device ranging from perforation of the uterus to hair loss to allergic reactions.
As part of today’s daylong protest, the group is also broadcasting a sneak peek of a new documentary called The Bleeding Edge to Bayer.
The film details stories of women who have suffered serious complications.
The documentary hits Netflix July 27.
Responding to the protest, Bayer issued this statement:
“Bayer is deeply committed to providing women with birth control options that meet their individual needs, and our greatest priority is ensuring patient safety and the proper use of our products. We also respect the rights of all people to peacefully assemble and welcome honest debate on any issue.
“As a leader in women’s healthcare, Bayer believes strongly that women and their physicians should make reproductive health decisions based on sound science. Over the last 20 years, Essure has been studied by Bayer and independent medical professionals in more than 200,000 patients, both in pre- and post-approval studies, and this extensive body of scientific evidence establishes that Essure is comparable in safety and effectiveness to tubal ligation – an invasive surgical procedure that is the only other option for women who desire permanent birth control.
“We are increasingly concerned with the continued spread of misinformation that may scare women with Essure to seek removal, which can lead to serious and unnecessary surgery, as well as post-operative complications. It is important that women speak with their doctor any time they have concerns or questions about a product or procedure and we encourage women who have questions or concerns about Essure to seek proper medical advice from an experienced, board-certified Obstetrician-Gynecologist.”
In 2016, the FDA required Bayer to add a black box warning, the most serious of warnings to the label.
Earlier this year, the FDA announced doctors can only prescribe the implant to women who have read and signed a brochure about the potential side effects.