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Contraceptive Choices After Medication Abortion

Am J Obstet Gynecol; ePub 2017 Oct 3; Rocca, et al

Compared to aspiration abortion patients and despite similar contraceptive choices, fewer medication abortion patients initiated intrauterine devices (IUDs) over 1-year follow-up, a recent study found. The sub-analysis from a cluster, randomized trial included 643 US abortion patients (aged 18-25 years) who did not desire pregnancy who were followed for 1 year. It examined differences in contraceptive counseling, method choices, and use between medication and aspiration abortion patients. Researchers found:

  • 166 (26%) participants had a medication abortion and 477 (74%) had an aspiration abortion at enrollment visit.
  • The proportions of women choosing to use IUDs or implant (29%), or a short-acting hormonal method (58%), were similar by abortion type.
  • The proportions of women who used short-acting hormonal methods (71% medication vs 57% aspiration), and condoms or no method (20% vs 22%) within 3 months were not significantly different by abortion type.
  • However, IUD initiation over 1 year was significantly lower post-medication vs aspiration abortion.


Rocca CH, Goodman S, Grossman DJ, et al. Contraception after medication abortion in the United State: Results from a cluster randomized trial. [Published online ahead of print October 3, 2017]. Am J Obstet Gynecol. doi:10.1016/j.ajog.2017.09.020.