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Ryan Family Planning Center

Louisville Family Planning

The decision to postpone conception is a personal choice that women face throughout their reproductive years. When you think of family planning choices, consider the UofL Physicians’ Ryan Family Planning Center.

We offer personal care in an understanding and supportive environment, staffed by doctors and nurses specially trained to provide the most up-to-date, complete and highest quality family planning care available.

Our compassionate, competent physicians and staff provide comprehensive contraception counseling and services, miscarriage management for pregnancy loss and termination of pregnancy counseling and care for women with medical complications.

We provide all birth control options, ranging from IUDs (intrauterine devices), oral contraceptives (the pill), implants, natural family planning counseling, permanent sterilization choices, and contraceptive services for peri-menopausal women and those who have medical conditions and need to delay pregnancy.

For patients who qualify, financial assistance is available through the Ryan Family Planning Center to cover a long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) method, such as the hormonal intrauterine device Mirena®, the nonhormonal intrauterine device ParaGard®, and the subdermal contraceptive implant Implanon® andNexplanon®. Shorter-acting methods include the injectable Depo-Provera®.

Of utmost concern to us is your privacy. Our Ryan Center takes pride in meeting your family planning needs in a respectful, confidential, all-inclusive setting.


Contraception Needs

There are times in a woman’s life when she may want or need contraceptives.

Certain medical conditions and diseases may make the risk of pregnancy complications simply too high, thus further compromising the woman’s health. Such conditions may include: cancer, gastric bypass, HIV/AIDS, stroke, history of blood clots, morbid obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, lupus and other autoimmune syndromes, Turner syndrome, epilepsy, clinical depression and severe migraines, as well as multiple lesser conditions in combination.

Each woman’s medical condition is unique to her, so our physicians assess each individual woman’s pregnancy risk associated with her situation to determine the safest family planning options.


A miscarriage, or the more formal medical term spontaneous abortion (SAB), is a pregnancy that ends on its own within the first 20 weeks of pregnancy.

Fetal demise (intrauterine fetal death or stillbirth)

A fetal death inside the uterus that does not deliver on its own may need special medical attention. A patient may opt to wait and deliver the fetus, choose an induction of labor to deliver, or a D&E (dilation and evacuation).

High-risk pregnancy

Women with significant medical problems may put their lives at risk if they continue a pregnancy. Having to make a decision between the woman’s life and continuing a dangerous pregnancy requires medical support and customized care.

Fetal anomalies

Women with desired pregnancies that are diagnosed with fetal anomalies not compatible with life outside the womb are faced with the difficult decision to end the pregnancy earlier or carry to full-term. We provide concerned, skilled and individualized care for women facing these medical decisions.

  • Counseling with a doctor regarding birth control options for women of all ages, including medically high-risk women
  • Counseling and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases (STIs)
  • Birth control counseling and services, including:
    • Long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) – insertion and removal
      • Implant contraceptives, such as Implanon®  and Nexplanon®
      • Injected contraceptives, such as Depo-Provera®
      • Hormonal intrauterine devices, such as the Mirena® IUD or ParaGard® Copper IUD
      • To request online information regarding LARC, please follow the links for information in English or in Spanish.
      • To submit an online request regarding eligibility for financial assistance for LARC, please follow the link to submit a patient form. We will contact you via your preferred method (e-mail, phone, U.S. mail).
  • Oral contraceptives and combined hormonal methods (birth control pills)
  • Vaginal Ring (NuvaRing®)
  • Patch (Ortho-Evra®)
  • Spermicidal and barrier contraception,
  • Fertility Awareness Methods, also known as the Rhythm Method
  • Emergency contraception
  • Permanent sterilization  techniques (permanent birth control) including:
    • Laparoscopic tubal ligation, the Essure® procedure
    • Post-partum sterilization, a permanent contraception option performed immediately following birth
  • Medical management of miscarriage and fetal demise using prescription medications
  • Surgical management of miscarriage, fetal demise, fetal anomalies, and maternal medical conditions:
    • Dilation and Curettage (D&C): a surgical procedure that opens the cervix and removes the contents of the uterus
      • When a woman miscarries, or loses the pregnancy, prior to 12 weeks gestation, a D&C procedure may be needed to remove the pregnancy.
    • Dilatation and Evacuation (D&E): a surgical procedure that opens the cervix and removes the pregnancy

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an implant device?

An implant device, such as Implanon® and Nexplanon®, is a small single flexible rod about the size of a matchstick that your medical provider inserts with a special applicator just under the surface of the skin of your arm. The procedure takes only a couple of minutes and is not painful due to medication used to numb the area of the arm where the implant is inserted.

Implant devices are highly effective in preventing pregnancy for as long as three years but can be removed at any time.

What is an IUD (intrauterine device)?

  • An IUD is one of the most effective forms of birth control and one of the easiest to use.
  • It does not interfere with sex or daily activities. A woman may continue to use a tampon with it.
  • It may be inserted immediately after childbirth and while breastfeeding.
  • It is a reversible form of birth control; if you wish to get pregnant, simply have the IUD removed.
  • The hormonal IUD may decrease menstrual pain and heavy menstrual bleeding.

The device is small, plastic, and T-shaped. It is inserted through the cervix and left inside the uterus to prevent pregnancy. Any woman of childbearing age, including teens and those who have never had a child, may use an IUD. Two types are available: 1) a copper non-hormonal IUD that can remain in place for ten years, and 2) a hormonal IUD that may remain in place for five years.

Do I qualify for financial assistance for a Ryan LARC (Long-Acting Reversible Contraceptive device)?

To request online information regarding your qualification for financial assistance for LARC, please follow the links for information in English or in Spanish.

What is emergency contraception?

EC (emergency contraception) prevents pregnancy after having sex without birth control or after the birth control method you were using failed. For women 17 years of age and older, some emergency contraceptive pills may be purchased at a pharmacy without a prescription; if you are under 17 years of age, you will need a prescription from a health care provider.

Two methods of emergency contraception are available: 1) emergency contraceptive pills, and 2) copper intrauterine device (IUD).

The copper IUD is the most effective form of emergency contraception. It must be placed by a medical provider in the uterus within five days (120 hours) after unprotected sex.

What is the vaginal ring?

A vaginal ring is a flexible plastic device that the woman inserts into her upper vagina. Once in place, the ring releases hormones (estrogen and progestin) that prevent pregnancy. Most women and their partners report that they are unable to feel the ring when properly placed.

The ring remains in place for 21 days and is removed for 7 days during the menstrual period; then a new ring is inserted as the 28-day cycle begins again.

What is a Depo shot (injection)?

A Depo-Provera® injection provides pregnancy protection for three months. Your health care provider will administer the injection, and it must be given on time. Once the Depo-Provera® injections are discontinued, fertility returns in about 10 months.

What are the sterilization options?

For women:

Sterilization is a permanent method of birth control offered to women who have completed their families or have a medical condition that a pregnancy would make life-threatening.

In a tubal ligation, the fallopian tubes are blocked or closed preventing eggs from moving through the tubes, thus preventing sperm from making contact with an egg and causing fertilization.

A laparoscopic sterilization is performed under local anesthesia through two small incisions in the abdomen. A little camera is inserted through one incision near the navel (belly button); another incision is made near the fallopian tubes so that the tubes may be clipped, cut, or secured with bands. These abdominal incisions are closed with stitches or special tape.

Essure® is a tubal sterilization method performed using an instrument called a hysteroscope. A small camera inserted through the cervix guides the instrument in blocking the fallopian tubes, thus preventing sperm from entering or eggs from exiting through the tubes.

For men:

Vasectomy is a permanent sterilization option for men. During the surgical procedure, the small tubes called the vas deferens that carry sperm from the testes to the urethra are tied, clipped, or sealed to prevent sperm from mixing with fluid from the seminal vesicles and prostate gland. Without sperm, semen cannot fertilize a woman’s egg.

Vasectomy is highly effective in preventing pregnancy but does not prevent STD/STI (sexually transferred diseases and infections) or HIV/AIDS.

Physicians in this practice may not see patients at all locations listed below. For details, please call the appointment line for the location you are interested in visiting.

Offices and Clinics

  • OB/GYN & Women's Health at UofL Physicians Outpatient Center
    401 E. Chestnut St.
    Suite 410
    Louisville, Kentucky 40202
    View Google Map

Hospital Affiliations

  • University of Louisville Hospital

Our physicians and staff conduct contraceptive counseling and family planning services through the Ryan Family Planning Center.

The center accepts referrals from physicians throughout Kentucky and Indiana, as well as self-referrals by patients. In July 2011, the Ryan Center received a national grant that provides some contraceptive services at no costs. 

Provider Resources & Referral Information

We welcome provider referrals for all family planning needs including all-options pregnancy counseling, adolescent and medically complicated contraception, and complicated pregnancy services.

To make a referral, please call (502) 588-4400.

For an emergency or after office hours, call the University of Louisville Hospital, Labor & Delivery, to speak with a physician: (502) 562-3094.


Appointments are private. The Ryan Family Planning Center is integrated into the University of Louisville’s obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) services; therefore, you will be examined and counseled by a doctor during your visit.