Efficacy of a combined contraceptive regimen consisting of condoms and emergency contraception pills
1 Shanghai Institute of Planned Parenthood Research/WHO Collaborating Center on Human Research, Shanghai 200032, China
2 National Laboratory of Contraceptives and Devices Research of China, Shanghai 200032, China
BMC Public Health 2014, 14:354 doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-354Published: 14 April 2014
To evaluate and compare the effectiveness of the combined regimen (consisting of condoms and emergency contraception pills (ECP)) and using condoms only for the purpose of preventing pregnancy.
One-thousand-five-hundred-and-sixty-two (1,562) couples as volunteers enrolled at nine centers in Shanghai. Eight-hundred-and-twelve (812) were randomized to use male condoms and ECP (i.e., Levonorgestrel) as a back-up to condoms (the intervention group) and 750 to use male condoms only(the control group), according to their working unit. Participants were visited at admission and at the end of 1, 3, 6, 9, and 12 months. The cumulative life table rates were calculated for pregnancy and other reasons for discontinuation.
The gross cumulative life table rates showed that the cumulative discontinuation rates for all reasons during the year of follow-up in the condoms plus emergency contraception group and the condoms only group were 7.76 ± 0.94 and 6.61 ± 0.91, respectively, per 100 women (χ2 = 0.41, p = 0.5227). The cumulative gross pregnancy rate of the condoms plus emergency contraception group and the condoms only group were 2.17 ± 0.52 and 1.25 ± 0.41, respectively, per 100 women (χ2 = 1.93, p = 0.1645). The Pearl Index in the condoms plus emergency contraception group and the condoms only group were 2.21% and 1.26%, respectively.
Male condoms remain a highly effective contraceptive method for a period of one year while consistently and correctly used. In addition, the lowest pregnancy rate followed from perfect use condom.