Fertility Awareness-Based Guidelines for Postpartum Women

Marcos Arevalo, Georgetown University
Irit Sinai, Georgetown University

Avoiding pregnancy during the first months postpartum is critical for the health of mother and child, yet many postpartum women do not have access to, or do not wish to use, modern hormonal contraceptive methods. We describe new fertility awareness-based guidelines for postpartum women that provide simple instructions to identify when they should avoid unprotected intercourse to prevent pregnancy. The guidelines are appropriate for women no longer using LAM until they re-establish cycle regularity postpartum. A pilot study to establish the efficacy and acceptability of these guidelines is underway in Guatemala and Peru. Almost 200 users have been admitted, most still in postpartum amenorrhea. User compliance with the guidelines is high with only initial counseling. Interviews with participants show they find the guidelines acceptable. The presentation will include preliminary efficacy results, a discussion of acceptability, compliance, and ‘continuation’, and results from interviews with users about their experience.

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Presented in Poster Session 6: Applied Demography, Methods, Health and Mortality