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Author Topic: Tampons will disintegrate inside you?
Polyeth12
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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I found the following story on another message board (TMI WARNING)

"This might be TMI, but there is a HUGE moral to the story. I had my annual yearly appointment yesterday, and all seemed to go well. This time was like all the others, every exam, every year, I'm asked about a "funny discharge," and if I have a lot of pain or discomfort. The answer is always the same, "No, no pain/discomfort, I don't know what it is but it's normal for me,". It is always dismissed, and my labs always return normal. Yesterday I learned something that unfortunately other physicians have let go.

I am a tampon user, as many of us are. The Dr. asked me if "by chance" there was still a tampon inside, that I'd "forgotten about,". I tried not to take HUGE offense to this because he!! no I haven't. Anyhow I heard her out, and she asked me what brand I use. Nearly as soon as I said, "O.B." she gasped, and said, "Oh, that's it then. I have been in this business for over 26 years, and what happens with those is that pieces of the tampon break off and then it's just a matter of time before they begin disintegrating inside of you,". Then I watched as she pulled out clump after clump.. It was horrible. I have literally NO pain, which is good that it hadn't gotten infected. I don't know actually how it did NOT cause an infection, as she said it was literally attached to my cervix! She suggested that I switch to Playtex, "the safest on today's market". I plan to follow up in 3 months, to be sure all is healing up. I may need to anyhow, who knows if this will affect my labwork?

I just want to spread the word, because someone else may not be so lucky to escape infection, or have a physician who actually examines the "funny discharge". It concerns me that she knew right away what brand, and that this is more common than we realize!"

Some of the responses to the above post noted that, if this was so common, why haven't we heard about it before. Several of them tried internet searches on the subject and found nothing. I was just wondering if people here thought this was someone making up a UL or if its an acutal, albeit rare, issue.

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Fantine
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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It sounds made up to me, although perhaps related to the "tampons have asbestos in them" legend. Maybe it's just an attack against the OB brand.

I see several problems with this story:

First of all, if I have a "funny discharge", my doctor takes a sample and sends it to the lab to find out what it is--it's not just ignored because there's no pain. Even if I told it was "normal for me", she would find out if it was really something normal.

If the tampons were disintegrating inside you, how would the doc be able to pull out "clump after clump"? Disintegrating and accumulating are two different things.

How would cotton or other fibers get "attached" to the cervix? It's not live tissue, so it's not going to reproduce and grow and get "attached". Besides, the vagina is a self-cleaning organ--gravity and natural discharge assures that nothing stays in there for long.

If something had accumulated and somehow attached itself to the cervix, there would definitely be symptoms--pain, missed periods, infections... it wouldn't be something that could happen without the woman knowing about it.

I vote for myth.

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"I was raised to be charming, not sincere."
--Cinderella's Prince, Into the Woods, by Stephen Sondheim

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erinker74
Deck the Malls


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Ditto on the myth vote

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"I bet a funny thing about driving a car off a cliff is, while you're in midair,
you still hit those brakes. Hey, better try the emergency brake." -Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

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Ana Ng
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Wouldn't the Dr. notice the "clumps" during the exam, anyway?

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My great grandfather planted that tree!

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Cervus
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I think all brands of tampons are essentially made the same way out of the same material. This seems like a slam against the OB brand for some reason.

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"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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NancyFancyPants
Deck the Malls


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Only a partial myth. I don't know that they disintegrate, but there can be fibers left behind. One of my friends had fibers scraped out at an annual exam. The doc told her that it was probably because she was sleeping with them, telling her to use a pad at night.

I don't know if the Tampax leaflet still suggests this (doubt it), but years ago, the leaflet said that it was okay to double the protection by inserting two, then tying the strings together. My sister forgot to tie them together once, changed only one and left the other in there. Found by the doc when she started complaining of pain and discharge. She had a procedure to have the other removed, then had to have a D&C to be on the safe side. It did not, however, disintegrate into pieces after being there for at least a month.

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And on the 7th day, God said, "Let there be lips!"

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Polyeth12
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Thanks for the responses. I thought it was a myth too, or at least greatly exaggerated. I just had no idea why the woman would have any reason to lie, since she's a regular poster on that message board and seems to have plenty to say without making stuff up...then again, why does anyone start a UL?
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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Okay, this might be just WAAY too much information, but:

Once in college, about a day after my period, instead of just the normal tapering off diminishing discharge, it kept on and was FOUL. I mean, FOUL FOUL. Like, my roommate looked at me and said "WHAT is going ON with you?" and I was wondering too because it was something you just couldn't live with. It reached this level within just a few hours, 24 or less.

I was kind of freaking out and then I remembered overhearing my mom talking to someone about "leaving one in there" one time and I thought, hmm, and - well, you don't need any more details than that, but, yeah, I found out that I had apparently forgotten to take a tampon out, had put another one in, and the first one had gotten pushed up in there far enough I didn't realize it was there. But it was, and soaked in blood and it doesn't take long for that to get FOUL.

(hey, it was college, I was probably drunk and had no idea what I was doing - it sounds like an idiotic thing to do, but we all do idiotic things like that from time to time. *shrug* it's called being human.)

So I don't see how anyone could have tampon material in their vagina - with secretions and blood in it that is, how old? days, weeks, months? -without either getting that toxic disease (what was it called) or a discharge so skanky that if didnt' get to the doctor yourself, they'd force you to with a 20 foot pole.

I mean just think about it. I don't think you could have measurable amounts of foreign material, especially fiber, just staying in there for a long time without some dramatic symptoms.

-perhaps just a few bitty fibers would get in there and not be such a problem but wouldn't the normal muenstral flow sort of wash all that out?

edited

--------------------
"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Lawgiver
Deck the Malls


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I have a friend who also left a tampon in, she said the same thing, after just a day or two, the odor was so foul it was nauseating. I vote myth.

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I looked at my sleeping husband and longed to plunge my elbow through his peaceful face. ~ Annissa

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Nonny Mouse, on Santa's laptop
Once in Royal Circuit City


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The cynic in me suspects that this piece was written by someone who owns a lot of stock in Playtex.

Nonny

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When there isn't anything else worth analyzing, we examine our collective navel. I found thirty-six cents in change in mine the other day. Let no one say that there is no profit in philosophy. -- Silas Sparkhammer

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Esprise Me
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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According to this page, (which, incidentally, puts to rest a similar rumor about Tampax "Pearl" tampons)
quote:
Fiber residue, which occurs with all brands of tampons, isn't really a health concern, as the stray fibers are eventually sloughed off by the vagina along with other menstrual material.
It's kind of like the old wives' tale about chewing gum staying in your stomach for seven years. It just doesn't work that way.

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"If God wrote it, the grammar must be infallible. Perhaps it is we who are mistaken." -MapleLeaf

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Polyeth12
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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quote:
Originally posted by Monster Mousse:
The cynic in me suspects that this piece was written by someone who owns a lot of stock in Playtex.

Nonny

I had thought that too. May be she'll start recommending playtex bras and bottles too [lol]
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jessboo
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Polyeth12:

"This might be TMI, but there is a HUGE moral to the story. I had my annual yearly appointment yesterday, and all seemed to go well.

Annual yearly?
/pedant

If this really happened, and had been happening for so long, I'm sure there would be more press about it. That brand would not be allowed to be sold if this happened to so many women.

quote:

So I don't see how anyone could have tampon material in their vagina - with secretions and blood in it that is, how old? days, weeks, months? -without either getting that toxic disease (what was it called)

Toxic shock symdrome?

The playtex thing seemed very suspicious to me too. Viral marketing! Run!!

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Join me on Lost - www.lost.eu/edcf

Do you have any wine? All of this would go a lot smoother in an altered state of reality.

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Yeah, that was it, thanks, Jessboo.

"Fiber residue, which occurs with all brands of tampons, isn't really a health concern, as the stray fibers are eventually sloughed off by the vagina along with other menstrual material."

*nods* I thought so.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Ramblin' Dave, quietly making noise
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by jessBOO:


Toxic shock symdrome?

I had a girlfriend several years ago who was convinced that OB tampons (and only OBs) caused toxic shock syndrome. I don't know where she'd heard that, but this sounds like another version of whatever story she had heard.

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Another lifetime I'd have fallen in love with you
Swept away by my feelings, ashamed and confused
But just now it's enough to be walking with you
Let the mystery play as it will! -Lui Collins

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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It was Rely tampons that caused the orginal scare, and it was in fact based on some actual cases of TSS.

But my understanding is that theoretically, any tampon could cause TSS if it was left in long enough. The Rely tampons were so absorbent they could be left in a long time, so that was the problem - if you were remove tampons after a few hours it doesn't matter what brand it is, the risk of TSS is smaller.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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franjava
Deck the Malls


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All the brands of tampons I have used have the TSS warning.

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Never eat anything given to you by a toddler.

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ica171
Deck the Malls


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This could be totally anecdotal too, but I've heard stories about kids having to do assignments at school that involve starting chain letters online and seeing if they get them back, and when. That's what this reminded me of--that for some reason she wanted to start an internet rumor/UL.
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Trixie Tang
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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I've actually had TSS twice. Once in high school, and once more just a few weeks ago. You don't have to leave a tampon in for days for it to occur; just overnight will sometimes do the trick. The first time it happened, I was most likely using Tampax. This last time, I was using OB.

OB is still my brand of choice. I don't think the brand is the problem in TSS. It's just the absorbency level paired with the bacterial levels in your vagina. All tampons are made of basically the same materials, it's just the shape of the product or applicator that defines the differences.

Ever notice that Playtex and Tampax are always coming up with new and improved ways to insert cheap cotton wads into your vagina? I like OB because they don't play those games. "Here! Decent tampons! Use them and use less of them because they are so kickass! Applicator? Why? Don't you wash your hands after you go to the bathroom?"

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Cactus Wren
Jingle Bell Hock


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1. As Fantine has pointed out, no physician would accept a patient's self-diagnosis that a vaginal discharge was "normal for me" without further investigation.

2. A well-known and popular brand of tampon presents a serious health risk -- but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email. Right. And you can go blind from using sunscreen, but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email. And shampoo will give you cancer, but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email.

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“Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn't mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar.” -- Edward R. Murrow

IOToriSparrowANK!

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Cactus Wren:
1. As Fantine has pointed out, no physician would accept a patient's self-diagnosis that a vaginal discharge was "normal for me" without further investigation.

2. A well-known and popular brand of tampon presents a serious health risk -- but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email. Right. And you can go blind from using sunscreen, but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email. And shampoo will give you cancer, but the only way we ever learn about this is from Webforum postings and email.

And that's why it's SO IMPORTANT to PASS this information on if you REALLY care ABOUT your friends!!!!111!!!!eleventyeleven!!!!1111

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Avril
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Trixie Tang:
Applicator? Why? Don't you wash your hands after you go to the bathroom?

Well, yes. But in public restrooms that means I have to go out and let people see my icky hands. Since I live in a dorm, almost every restroom I use is a public restroom. Also, unless I waddle over to the sink with my pants around my ankles, I am likely to get stuff on them if I try to pull them up. But the bottom line is that the applicators work much better for me than a finger for the actual mechanics of insertion. YM, quite clearly, V.

Avril

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There is no failure unless one stops. --Ray Bradbury

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candycane from strangers
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Agreed on all points, Avril. I've tried non-applicator tampons and I just cant get them far enough in.

--------------------
Me: "He's 19? Uh oh, I bought him a beer."
A: "You contributed to the deliquency of a minor in drag!"
"Sweet spell check: keeping drunks off the radar since 1995."- IND
God Re-Animate Green Pork Bush

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Trixie Tang
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Huh. I didn't know some people couldn't use non applicator tampons. Also, I can insert them without my hands being visibly icky. OB generally fits me better, and never leak. That's probably why it caused an infection. I got too confidant.
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nurple
We Three Blings


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quote:
Originally posted by candiru from strangers:
Agreed on all points, Avril. I've tried non-applicator tampons and I just cant get them far enough in.

Same here.

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"You better respect the Rap or the Rap won't respect you." Ledatru

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Polyeth12
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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Thanks for everyone's responses. I figured the story was total B.S. but the reason I posted it was because it came from a board that usually discusses topics pertaining to parenting issues, and the board is pretty lively without members resorting to making up stories. Plus most of the ULs I've seen/heard have been FOAF stories rather than the even happening to the person telling the UL.
Now I can't help but wonder if the lady is making up her kids too. [Roll Eyes]

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DevilBunny
Deck the Malls


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I can't use applicator tampons. Can never get the dratted thing to come out. These days, if I end up having to use applicator tampons (if I have to get one from a friend, or from a machine in the toilets) I just take the tampon out of the applicator bit and proceed as for a non-applicator version. It just doesn't work so well.

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"For God has seven thousand names, and one of them is bastard"

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Angel With Wax Wings
Deck the Malls


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I can't use tampons without an applicator, like some of you already said I can't seem to get them in far enough, also I think it seems like it would be more sanitary to use an applicator?

~Monica

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"Run for five minutes? Why don't you just shoot me now?"--Comic Book Guy (Simpsons)

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Ryda Wong, EBfCo.
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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quote:
Originally posted by Angel With Wax Wings:
I can't use tampons without an applicator, like some of you already said I can't seem to get them in far enough, also I think it seems like it would be more sanitary to use an applicator?

~Monica

You have to actually insert the finger as well, because it acts as the applicator. And, frankly, I don't find her unsanitary during my period.
I wash my hands, but I do that anyway.

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So many spankings! It feels so good! But at the same time, I don't care about meeting your family! - I'mNotDedalus:

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