Picture Of Newborn Holding IUD Goes Viral, Baby Not Born With Birth Control In Hand [Debunked]

If you spend any amount of time on social media, you may have come across a picture of a newborn with an IUD clutched in his hand.

It was an Alabama mother named Lucy Hellein who decided to take a photo of her new son Dexter Tyler holding her IUD and share it on Facebook. Little did the new mother from Alabama know at the time that the picture of her newborn son holding an IUD in his hand would take on a life of its own. It didn't take long for media outlets to catch wind of the picture and pushed it into viral status. The problem? Well, the stories being attached to the viral picture of the newborn holding an IUD weren't true.

The most popular story tied to the viral picture of the newborn with the IUD was that the newborn had been born with the IUD clutched in his hand. Snopes – known for getting to the bottom of a fishy news story – and several other outlets have confirmed the newborn was not born with the IUD in his hand.

Glamour Health notes that Hellein and her partner were already the proud parents of two children. So, Hellein decided to get an IUD inserted in August. In December, however, Lucy learned the Mirena IUD had failed and she was four months pregnant.

IUD is an extremely popular choice for birth control in the U.S. This is largely because it is a strong method of birth control as it is 99 percent effective. This type of birth control will also last anywhere from five to 10 years and doesn't require monthly trips to the doctor. Naturally, there is a 1 percent chance the Mirena IUD will fail and this mother from Alabama just happened to be that 1 percent.

Pregnant woman holding heart over her baby bump
[Image by visivastudio/Shutterstock]

"IUD failures are quite rare, but they do happen," Mary Jane Minkin, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale University, revealed to Glamour Health.

"Women can ovulate with a Mirena, however, basically sperm aren't 'allowed access into the uterus' because of the progestin in the device—it creates a very hostile environment for sperm thinking about entering the vagina. Also, the lining of the uterus gets quite thin from the progestin, so pregnancies occurring are quite rare."
Lucy told Metro that her OB looked for her Mirena IUD during an ultrasound, but they were unable to locate it. For this reason, her OB assumed the IUD must have fallen out at some point in time and that was probably why it failed. Mary Jane Minkin also noted it was a little weird that OBs were not able to detect the IUD with an ultrasound.

When Lucy Hellein gave birth to her newborn son Dexter Tyler via C-section on April 27, her doctor discovered the missing IUD that had eluded everyone this entire time. It was this IUD that could be seen being held in the hand of her newborn baby in the picture that went viral.

While it appears as if Lucy Hellein has either deleted the photo or changed the privacy setting, news outlets claim the original post had been shared nearly 60,000 times. Mary Jane Minkin hopes this story won't discourage those who are interested in getting birth control as Mirena IUD is extremely effective 99 percent of the time.

This Alabama mother did post the picture of her newborn son holding the IUD on Instagram as well. However, the Instagram photo does not appear to have gone viral the same way the Facebook post did.

Did you happen to catch wind of the story claiming this Alabama mother's newborn was born holding her IUD in his hand? Did you think the story could be true? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

[Featured Image by khamiak/Shutterstock]