Contraceptive use in adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa: Evidence from demographic and health surveys

Rebekah J. McCurdy, Peter F. Schnatz, Paul J. Weinbaum, Junjia Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: Failure to use contraceptives contributes to an unacceptably high rate of undesired pregnancy in Sub-Saharan adolescents with associated maternal and neonatal mortality/morbidity. Evidence-based research is needed to understand contraceptive usage in Sub-Saharan adolescents and to enable appropriate allocation of donor resources. Design: Nationally-representative USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) Demographic and Health Surveys from 18 least developed Sub-Saharan African nations. Population: 212, 819 Sub-Saharan African women (45, 054 were 15-19 years old). Methods: The percentages of adolescents using contraception, as well as their preferred contraceptive methods and desired family size, were reported. Main Outcome Measures: Contraceptive Use, Neonatal Mortality, Undesired Pregnancy, Pregnancy Terminations. Results: Most adolescents (92.4%) surveyed reported no contraceptive use, although 21.6% reported recent sexual activity. A current pregnancy was reported in 6.6% (n=2, 951) of adolescents with 29.9% of these pregnancies being unwanted. Many surveyed adolescents (18.8%) had at least one prior birth. A death of the previous child was reported in 6.6% (n=560) with half of these deaths (n=276) occurring within the first month of life. Many adolescents planned to delay childbearing for at least two years (37.1%) or were unsure about future timing (33.3%), and 2.2% reported a history of at least one pregnancy termination. Most adolescents (73.1%) felt it would be a problem if they became pregnant. Adolescents indicated injectable medications and contraceptive pills were the preferred future contraceptives at 39.9% and 31.4% respectively. Conclusions: Sub-Saharan African adolescents report a mismatch between desire for contraception and use; preferred methods are oral and injectable contraceptives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-272
Number of pages12
JournalConnecticut medicine
Volume78
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

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Africa South of the Sahara
Contraceptive Agents
Demography
Contraception
Pregnancy
Infant Mortality
United States Agency for International Development
Contraception Behavior
Unwanted Pregnancies
Injections
Resource Allocation
Maternal Mortality
Pregnancy Rate
Oral Contraceptives
Sexual Behavior
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Tissue Donors
Parturition
Morbidity

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

McCurdy, Rebekah J. ; Schnatz, Peter F. ; Weinbaum, Paul J. ; Zhu, Junjia. / Contraceptive use in adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa : Evidence from demographic and health surveys. In: Connecticut medicine. 2014 ; Vol. 78, No. 5. pp. 261-272.
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abstract = "Objective: Failure to use contraceptives contributes to an unacceptably high rate of undesired pregnancy in Sub-Saharan adolescents with associated maternal and neonatal mortality/morbidity. Evidence-based research is needed to understand contraceptive usage in Sub-Saharan adolescents and to enable appropriate allocation of donor resources. Design: Nationally-representative USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) Demographic and Health Surveys from 18 least developed Sub-Saharan African nations. Population: 212, 819 Sub-Saharan African women (45, 054 were 15-19 years old). Methods: The percentages of adolescents using contraception, as well as their preferred contraceptive methods and desired family size, were reported. Main Outcome Measures: Contraceptive Use, Neonatal Mortality, Undesired Pregnancy, Pregnancy Terminations. Results: Most adolescents (92.4{\%}) surveyed reported no contraceptive use, although 21.6{\%} reported recent sexual activity. A current pregnancy was reported in 6.6{\%} (n=2, 951) of adolescents with 29.9{\%} of these pregnancies being unwanted. Many surveyed adolescents (18.8{\%}) had at least one prior birth. A death of the previous child was reported in 6.6{\%} (n=560) with half of these deaths (n=276) occurring within the first month of life. Many adolescents planned to delay childbearing for at least two years (37.1{\%}) or were unsure about future timing (33.3{\%}), and 2.2{\%} reported a history of at least one pregnancy termination. Most adolescents (73.1{\%}) felt it would be a problem if they became pregnant. Adolescents indicated injectable medications and contraceptive pills were the preferred future contraceptives at 39.9{\%} and 31.4{\%} respectively. Conclusions: Sub-Saharan African adolescents report a mismatch between desire for contraception and use; preferred methods are oral and injectable contraceptives.",
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Contraceptive use in adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa : Evidence from demographic and health surveys. / McCurdy, Rebekah J.; Schnatz, Peter F.; Weinbaum, Paul J.; Zhu, Junjia.

In: Connecticut medicine, Vol. 78, No. 5, 01.01.2014, p. 261-272.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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N2 - Objective: Failure to use contraceptives contributes to an unacceptably high rate of undesired pregnancy in Sub-Saharan adolescents with associated maternal and neonatal mortality/morbidity. Evidence-based research is needed to understand contraceptive usage in Sub-Saharan adolescents and to enable appropriate allocation of donor resources. Design: Nationally-representative USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) Demographic and Health Surveys from 18 least developed Sub-Saharan African nations. Population: 212, 819 Sub-Saharan African women (45, 054 were 15-19 years old). Methods: The percentages of adolescents using contraception, as well as their preferred contraceptive methods and desired family size, were reported. Main Outcome Measures: Contraceptive Use, Neonatal Mortality, Undesired Pregnancy, Pregnancy Terminations. Results: Most adolescents (92.4%) surveyed reported no contraceptive use, although 21.6% reported recent sexual activity. A current pregnancy was reported in 6.6% (n=2, 951) of adolescents with 29.9% of these pregnancies being unwanted. Many surveyed adolescents (18.8%) had at least one prior birth. A death of the previous child was reported in 6.6% (n=560) with half of these deaths (n=276) occurring within the first month of life. Many adolescents planned to delay childbearing for at least two years (37.1%) or were unsure about future timing (33.3%), and 2.2% reported a history of at least one pregnancy termination. Most adolescents (73.1%) felt it would be a problem if they became pregnant. Adolescents indicated injectable medications and contraceptive pills were the preferred future contraceptives at 39.9% and 31.4% respectively. Conclusions: Sub-Saharan African adolescents report a mismatch between desire for contraception and use; preferred methods are oral and injectable contraceptives.

AB - Objective: Failure to use contraceptives contributes to an unacceptably high rate of undesired pregnancy in Sub-Saharan adolescents with associated maternal and neonatal mortality/morbidity. Evidence-based research is needed to understand contraceptive usage in Sub-Saharan adolescents and to enable appropriate allocation of donor resources. Design: Nationally-representative USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) Demographic and Health Surveys from 18 least developed Sub-Saharan African nations. Population: 212, 819 Sub-Saharan African women (45, 054 were 15-19 years old). Methods: The percentages of adolescents using contraception, as well as their preferred contraceptive methods and desired family size, were reported. Main Outcome Measures: Contraceptive Use, Neonatal Mortality, Undesired Pregnancy, Pregnancy Terminations. Results: Most adolescents (92.4%) surveyed reported no contraceptive use, although 21.6% reported recent sexual activity. A current pregnancy was reported in 6.6% (n=2, 951) of adolescents with 29.9% of these pregnancies being unwanted. Many surveyed adolescents (18.8%) had at least one prior birth. A death of the previous child was reported in 6.6% (n=560) with half of these deaths (n=276) occurring within the first month of life. Many adolescents planned to delay childbearing for at least two years (37.1%) or were unsure about future timing (33.3%), and 2.2% reported a history of at least one pregnancy termination. Most adolescents (73.1%) felt it would be a problem if they became pregnant. Adolescents indicated injectable medications and contraceptive pills were the preferred future contraceptives at 39.9% and 31.4% respectively. Conclusions: Sub-Saharan African adolescents report a mismatch between desire for contraception and use; preferred methods are oral and injectable contraceptives.

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