Role of peri-partum counselling in improving choice of postpartum contraception

Vidyadhar B. Bangal, Sunil Thitame, K. V. Somasundaram


Background: The choice of a contraceptive method is a complex decision. Health care providers have an important role in providing information and supporting patients' decision making about contraceptive choices through counselling. Non-use of contraceptive methods, use of less effective methods, and incorrect and inconsistent use of methods underlie the high frequency of unintended pregnancy. Prospective cross-sectional study was undertaken to study the role of peri-partum counselling in improving choice of postpartum contraception at Pravara Rural Hospital Loni, Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, India.

Methods: Four hundred and fifty women in third trimester of pregnancy were individually counselled about the postpartum contraception, using educational material and pamphlets. The choice of postpartum contraception before and after the counselling was noted.

Results: Among primi gravidas, the most favored choices for postpartum contraception before counselling were condom (25%) and lactational amenorrhea method (12%). In the same group of women, the post counselling choices were PPIUCD (45%), condom (17%) and interval IUCD (7%). Among multi-gravida, the most favored choices for postpartum contraception before counselling were postpartum tubal ligation (26%), condom (20%) and lactational amenorrhea method or calendar method (17%). In the same group of women, the post counselling choices were postpartum tubal ligation (32%) PPIUCD (12%), condom (8%).

Conclusions: The study supports the usefulness of good quality counselling both with respect to the interpersonal relationship between the patient and the provider and quality of information that is provided during counselling. Postpartum intrauterine contraceptive device (PPIUCD), a long acting reversible contraceptive, will fulfil the felt need of postpartum contraception in near future.


Contraceptive choices, Contraceptive counselling, Postpartum contraception, Postpartum intrauterine contraceptive device

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