How does the number of oral contraceptive pill packs dispensed or prescribed affect continuation and other measures of consistent and correct use? A systematic review

Maria W. Steenland, Maria Rodriguez, Polly A. Marchbanks, Kathryn M. Curtis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: The review was conducted to examine studies that assess whether the number of pill packs dispensed, or prescribed, affects method continuation and other measures of use. Study Design: PubMed database was searched from inception through March 2012 for all peer-reviewed articles, in any language, that examined the effect of the number of oral contraceptive pill packs dispensed on method continuation, and other measures of use. The quality of each study was assessed using the United States Preventive Services Task Force grading system. Results: Four studies met the inclusion criteria for this review. Studies that compared 1 vs. 12, 1 vs. 12-13, or 3 vs. 7 packs found increased method continuation. However, one study that examined the difference between providing one and then three packs versus providing four packs all at once did not find a difference in continuation. In addition to continuation, evidence from the individual studies included found that a greater number of pill packs was associated with fewer pregnancy tests, fewer pregnancies and less cost per client. A greater number of pill packs was, however, also associated with increased pill wastage. Conclusions: A small body of evidence suggests that dispensing a greater number of oral contraceptive pill packs may increase continuation of use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)605-610
Number of pages6
JournalContraception
Volume87
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2013
Externally publishedYes

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Oral Contraceptives
Pregnancy Tests
Advisory Committees
PubMed
Language
Databases
Costs and Cost Analysis
Pregnancy

Keywords

  • Contraception
  • Systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cite this

How does the number of oral contraceptive pill packs dispensed or prescribed affect continuation and other measures of consistent and correct use? A systematic review. / Steenland, Maria W.; Rodriguez, Maria; Marchbanks, Polly A.; Curtis, Kathryn M.

In: Contraception, Vol. 87, No. 5, 05.2013, p. 605-610.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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