CDC Issues New Contraceptive Use Recommendations

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued, May 28, its first set of contraceptive use recommendations for U.S. health care professionals to use when providing family planning counseling and services.

U.S. Medical Eligibility Criteria for Contraceptive Use, 2010 provides guidance on whether women and men with particular medical conditions or physical characteristics can safely use certain methods of contraception.

“About half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unplanned,” said Richard N. Waldman, MD, president of American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). “These new recommendations should help improve contraceptive counseling and encourage more widespread use of effective contraception. This is particularly important for women with certain medical conditions for whom an unplanned pregnancy could be especially risky.”

The recommendations were adapted from guidance developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) with a few modifications for use in the United States, including recommendations about contraceptive use for women with venous thromboembolism, valvular heart disease, ovarian cancer, and uterine fibroids and for postpartum and breastfeeding women. Recommendations also were added to the U.S. guidance for women with rheumatoid arthritis, history of bariatric surgery, peripartum cardiomyopathy, endometrial hyperplasia, inflammatory bowel disease, and solid organ transplantation.

The recommendations are available on the CDC website.


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