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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Association between contraceptive discontinuation and pregnancy intentions in Guatemala

Janine L. Barden-O'Fallon, PhD, MEASURE Evaluation, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 206 W. Franklin St., CB 8120, Chapel Hill, NC 27516 and Ilene S. Speizer, PhD, MHS, SPH - Maternal and Child Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, MEASURE Evaluation Project, 206 W. Franklin St., Chapel Hill, NC 27516, 919-966-7411, ilene_speizer@unc.edu.

Contraceptive discontinuation is a common event that is often related to unintended pregnancy. According to a 1999 assessment of 14 DHS surveys, more than half of unintended pregnancies were the result of contraceptive discontinuation. Most studies on the relationship between contraceptive discontinuation and unwanted pregnancy undertake comparative analyses. This study examines whether contraceptive discontinuation is associated with pregnancies that were conceived earlier than desired (mistimed) or not wanted at the time of conception (unwanted). In Guatemala in 2002, 68% of births were wanted, 16.5% were mistimed, and 15.1% were unwanted. The main reasons given for contraceptive discontinuation were: side effects (21%), wanting to become pregnant (20.5%), and method failure (16.9%). This study uses data from the 2002 Guatemala Reproductive Health Survey, focusing on all pregnancies within three years prior to the survey. The pregnancies are classified into three groups: those among women who became pregnant within 12 months of discontinuing contraceptive use and who reported wanting to get pregnant as the reason for discontinuation; those among women that became pregnant within 12 months of discontinuing contraceptive use and who reported other reasons for discontinuation; and those among women that did not use any form of contraception within the 12 months preceding the pregnancy. After controlling for women's characteristics associated with pregnancy intentions, this study assesses whether reason for discontinuation is associated with having a mistimed or unwanted pregnancy. The information from this study can help to design programs to improve contraceptive use and reduce the prevalence of unintended pregnancies overall.

Learning Objectives:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No

Intention and Contraception

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA