A review of intrauterine contraception in the Asia-Pacific region Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND:Across the Asia-Pacific region, approximately 38% of pregnancies are unintended. Long-acting reversible contraception, such as intrauterine contraception (IUC), is effective in reducing unintended pregnancy. OBJECTIVE:This study aims to review access to, uptake of and influencing factors on IUC use in the Asia-Pacific region. METHODS:We searched PubMed and MEDLINE for articles published between 1990 and 2015. We identified and reviewed primary studies that examined the following points and were relevant to the Asia-Pacific region: available types and utilization rates of IUC and factors that influence these. We also obtained the opinions of local experts to gain a better understanding of the situation in specific countries. RESULTS:Types of IUC used and utilization rates vary widely across the region. Factors influencing rates of utilization relate to healthcare systems, such as government policy on and subsidization of IUC, types of healthcare providers authorized to place IUC and local guidelines on preinsertion screening. Healthcare provider factors include concerns around pelvic inflammatory disease and the suitability of IUC in certain groups of women, whereas end-user factors include lack of awareness of IUC, concerns about safety, cultural or religious attitudes, access to IUC and costs. CONCLUSIONS:Across the Asia-Pacific region, clear data gaps and unmet needs exist in terms of access to and uptake of IUC. We believe that several recommendations are necessary to update future practice and policy for enhanced IUC utilization so that women across this region have better access to IUC.

publication date

  • 2017