The safety of intrauterine contraception initiation among women with current asymptomatic cervical infections or at increased risk of sexually transmitted infections

Tara C. Jatlaoui, Katharine Simmons, Kathryn M. Curtis

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective The objective was to assess risk of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) among women with current asymptomatic undiagnosed cervical infection or who are at high risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), comparing those who have a copper-bearing (Cu-) or levonorgestrel (LNG-) intrauterine device (IUD) placed with women who do not. Study design We searched PubMed and Cochrane Library for articles from January 1984 through January 2016 addressing our objective. We assessed study quality using the United States Preventive Services Task Force evidence grading system. Results Our search strategy yielded 2220 articles, of which 10 met inclusion criteria. Two studies provided direct evidence of PID rates in women with undiagnosed gonococcal or chlamydial (GC/CT) infection or at high risk for STIs initiating IUDs versus other contraceptive methods (level II-2, fair to poor), and neither study found a difference. Eight studies provided indirect evidence (II-2 to II-3, fair to poor). One study found no difference in PID rates between initiators of Cu- versus LNG-IUDs. Five studies compared algorithms based on patient factors with laboratory GC/CT screening to predict cervical infection. Based on likelihood ratios, none of these algorithms adequately identified women at high risk of asymptomatic cervical infection who should not undergo IUD placement. Two studies compared IUD placement on the same day as STI screening with delayed placement after screening and found no difference in PID rates. Conclusion Limited evidence suggests that IUD placement does not increase the risk of PID compared with no IUD placement among women with asymptomatic undiagnosed cervical infection or at high risk of STIs. Algorithms based on patient characteristics to identify women with asymptomatic GC/CT may be overly restrictive, leading to missed opportunities for IUD initiation. Historical concerns about higher PID risk among women at risk for STIs who use IUDs may not be relevant with modern devices and STI screening and treatment practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)701-712
Number of pages12
JournalContraception
Volume94
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cervical infection
  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Intrauterine device
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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