Low Acceptability of Certain Contraceptive Methods Among Young Women

OBJECTIVE: To examine what predicts low personal acceptability of four different contraceptive methods among young women.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional survey

SETTING: Urban adolescent contraception clinic in Colorado

PARTICIPANTS: Female clinic patients ages 13-24 initiating contraception from 8/2011-4/2012

METHODS: Survey participants reported their personal acceptability for oral contraceptive pills (OCPs), depot medroxyprogesterone (DMPA), contraceptive implants, and intrauterine devices (IUD) on a scale from 0 (low) to 10 (high). Responses of 0-4 were categorized as low personal acceptability. Demographic characteristics, reproductive history, and perceived contraceptive satisfaction of friends and family members were incorporated into multivariable and hierarchical logistic regression models to determine distinct predictors of low personal acceptability for each method.

RESULTS: Surveys were completed by 1,067 women. Participants’ mean age was 20±2.6 years. Half were White, 26% Hispanic, and 8.5% Black. 52% of participants who were aware of OCPs reported low acceptability of this method compared to 74% of those aware of DMPA. Fewer reported low acceptability of IUD (37%) or implant (43%), although fewer overall participants had heard of these methods. Each method had unique predictors of low personal acceptability, however for all method models, significant predictors included knowing someone who had become pregnant on that method or having a friend who dislikes that method.

CONCLUSION: Young women in this study with low personal acceptability of the four most common contraceptive methods had distinct demographic and reproductive health characteristics. Perceived negative experiences of friends and family members using contraception appeared most influential.


Hoopes AJ, Teal S, Akers AY, Sheeder J