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Awareness of emergency contraception among female college students in Chandigarh, India

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Author(s): Puri Sonia | Bhatia Vikas | Swami H | Singh Amarjit | Sehgal Alka | Kaur Amrit

Journal: Indian Journal of Medical Sciences
ISSN 0019-5359

Volume: 61;
Issue: 6;
Start page: 338;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Keywords: Awareness | contraception | emergency contraceptive pills | family planning | female students | reproductive health

ABSTRACT
Summary : Adolescents and young women are at the greatest risk of unintended pregnancy because they are unlikely to see a family planning provider before or immediately after the sexual activity. Therefore, preventing unintended pregnancy among them is the important concern. Sexually active young women are clients with special needs for contraception. They are eligible to use a variety of the available contraceptives. Introduction of emergency contraception (EC) in the recent past can help them avoid such unintended pregnancies. Objective : To investigate the awareness of emergency contraception in female college students. Study Design : Cross-sectional, questionnaire-based study. Materials and Methods : This study was conducted among college-going undergraduate and graduate female students of Punjab University, Chandigarh. Systematic random sampling was used to select the respondents. Results :Of the 1,017 college students included in the study, 507 (49.9%) knew about different contraceptive methods. Maximum awareness was regarding oral contraceptive pills (239, 47.1%). Only 74 (7.3%) had knowledge about emergency contraceptive pills (ECP). Of them, 10 (14.7%) students knew the correct time for use of ECP, and the side effects of ECP were known to 48 (88.9%) respondents. Conclusions : Awareness about ECP was very low among female college students of Chandigarh, especially regarding correct timing of its use and its side effects. Appropriate awareness programs on EC are needed for them.
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