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Rigshospitalet - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
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Concerns on future fertility among users and past-users of combined oral contraceptives: a questionnaire survey

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Objective: The combined oral contraceptive pill is the most preferred contraceptive method worldwide. Despite high life-time prevalence of infertility of 16-26%, scarce data about concerns of future fertility among COC users are available. We aimed to study whether COC usage induces concerns about fertility. Methods: Online questionnaire-based survey included 1283 current COC users and 1006 past users. The questionnaire covered knowledge and concerns of various aspects of fertility with respect to COC usage. Results: Significantly, more current users (66%) than past users (52%) had considered whether or not COC usage could affect future fertility (OR = 1.6, 95% CI 1.3-1.9). Nearly 50% of both groups believed COC usage could impair conception rates after discontinuation. Furthermore, 28% current vs. 19% past users believed COC could diminish the ovarian reserve more permanently. Conversely, 14% current and 11% past users believed that lack of ovulation could 'spare' the eggs (OR = 0.9, 95% CI 0.7-1.3). Significantly fewer current users (22%) vs. past users (35%) had heard, primarily by female friends, that a short break of 1-2 months during long-term COC usage was healthy, (OR 0.72, 95%CI = 0.56-0.92). Conclusions: Health care professionals prescribing hormonal contraception should be aware of misapprehensions and concerns of fertility among users of COC.

Original languageEnglish
JournalThe European journal of contraception & reproductive health care : the official journal of the European Society of Contraception
Volume24
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)347-355
Number of pages9
ISSN1362-5187
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019

    Research areas

  • Combined oral contraception, fertility awareness, fertility concerns, misapprehensions, ovarian reserve

ID: 57625653