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Giving advice on long-acting contraception

By Sarah Pillai

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Recent headlines have claimed that woman are not being offered enough choice in terms of contraception. In addition to the many brands of oral contraceptive pill, there are numerous other types of contraceptives for women, from implants to vaginal rings.

In the first of two articles on contraception, Sarah Pillai looks at the long-acting contraceptives available


For most women, contraception amounts to a life style choice. I write “women” advisedly. Men can use condoms or withdrawal methods but vasectomy, which is irreversible in most instances, provides the only reliable long-term method for them.

Although male hormonal methods of contraception have been researched for some years and have been found to be effective and relatively low in side effects, the challenge to the pharmaceutical industry to get people to perceive this as an acceptable option is considerable. So, back to women.

All women are different and no single method is suitable for all. Contraception should take into account many factors, such as the stage in a woman’s life, the potential (and need) for future fertility, risk of sexually transmitted infections, menstrual patterns, acceptability of bleeding patterns and cultural influences.

To read the full article download the attached PDF (210K)

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Sarah Pillai, DipGUM, MFFP, is a lead clinician at NHS Barnet. Dr Pillai is a consultant for Schering Plough and has received various honoraria from Bayer

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10981535

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