Correlates of contraceptive use 4 months postabortion: findings from a prospective study in Bangladesh

Erin Pearson, Kamal Kanti Biswas, Kathryn L. Andersen, Caroline Moreau, Rezwana Chowdhury, Sharmin Sultana, S. M. Shahidullah, Pamela J. Surkan, Michele R. Decker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objectives Using the social determinants framework as a guide, this study sought to understand correlates of postabortion contraceptive use at the individual, family and abortion service delivery levels. Study design This prospective study assessed correlates of contraceptive use 4 months postabortion and timing of initiation using a facility-based sample of 398 abortion clients who selected pills, condoms, injectables or no method immediately following the procedure. We measured potential correlates immediately following abortion, inclusive of spontaneous or induced abortion, and assessed contraceptive use outcomes 4 months postabortion. Multivariable logistic regression models identified correlates at each level. Potential individual level correlates included contraceptive and abortion history and fertility intentions; family correlates included intimate partner violence (IPV), discordance in fertility intentions and household decision-making; and service delivery correlates included procedure type and postabortion contraceptive counseling. Results Reported contraceptive use 4 months postabortion was high (85.4%). Contraceptive use at the index pregnancy (resulting in abortion) was the primary correlate of contraceptive use 4 months postabortion (adjusted odds ratio=2.9; 95% confidence interval: 1.5–5.9). Delayed contraceptive initiation was more common among women who reported past year IPV (36.8% vs. 19.5%; p=.03) particularly with spousal accompaniment for abortion, those in relationships with discordant fertility intentions (44.4% vs. 21.9%; p=.04) and those receiving medication abortion (56.7%) or dilation and curettage (57.1%), compared to manual vacuum aspiration (12.6%; p<.01). Conclusions Contraceptive use at the index pregnancy was the primary correlate of contraceptive use 4 months postabortion. Abortion procedure type and relationship dynamics were correlated with delayed postabortion contraceptive initiation. Women who reported IPV delayed initiation when accompanied by their spouse for abortion. Implications Postabortion contraceptive counseling should assess previous use patterns and provide information on using contraception effectively. Delayed initiation among women reporting IPV could be addressed through comprehensive, confidential counseling that includes violence screening, support for contraceptive initiation and offer of woman-controlled methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)279-287
Number of pages9
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017


  • Abortion
  • Bangladesh
  • Intimate partner violence
  • Postabortion contraception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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