I'm not having it removed for conception purposes (yet), I'm having it removed for weight loss reasons, to give my body time to normalise in time for when we ARE ready to try for children, and also so I have an idea of what my cycles are like now and hopefully increase our chances of conceiving relatively quickly.
I've had two (2) rods, starting with the first in July 2009, and it's replacement in September 2012. They're "good" for 3 years and while leaving it in a little longer doesn't hurt you (I've read some people just leave them in forever!), your chances of accidentally getting pregnant are increased.
My symptoms with the rod have been pretty good (I think) compared to some of the stories I've read. I haven't had a full period since I had it put in (a light one about a month in then nothing except some light spotting after the changeover). I've LOVED not having a period. No pain. It's been great in that regard. No pregnancy scares except at the change over (which I will explain again later).
The bad is I've gained a LOT of weight. How much is the rod and how much is lifestyle change (got married, moved to another country etc) I'll never know but I simply cannot shift the weight with it in. It's so disheartening to exercise, eat right, track calories and all that jazz and instead gain weight! A lot of people report the same thing. Gaining weight and it being next to impossible to shift. I have successfully lost weight PRIOR to getting the rod so I know that it's possible for me, and I know how to do it right (well I did... maybe my old body needs something else now), but it's just been going up and up and though I noticed it, I didn't really worry about it too much because at least I wasn't pregnant or having a period or worrying about taking the pill at the right time.
The doctor wasn't too impressed with where it was (it was pretty high up and curved downward) and when she was pressing down on it to get a good feel for where it is/was it started to ache, which I told her. She told me it was going to hurt a bit when she took it out because she was going to have to push it (great!).
She gave me the local, swabbed with the brown stuff, poked me to make sure I was numb and then made the cut and fiddled around until she got it out (maybe 5 mins or so). She put a steri-strip on it, a sticky bandage pad thing and then wrapped it in a bandage. I had to wait 24 hours before I could get it wet and if i got it wet I need to change the bandage pad and put a bandaid on it.
And now that's it!
I've yet to have a period and I have no idea when it will come. Some people report getting pregnant as soon as it is removed, others that it took them several months, even a year plus. This is why I've got it out now. While I'd love to be one who was able to get pregnant immediately, I'm not sure I would be, so it's out now and we're using barrier methods of birth control in the interim.
Now to track my ovulation!