Postpartum contraceptive counseling for first-time adolescent mothers: a randomized controlled trial

Alhambra Frarey, Elizabeth P. Gurney, Stephanie Sober, Paul G. Whittaker, Courtney A. Schreiber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Purpose: Rapid repeat pregnancy is common among adolescent mothers and is associated with increased risks of adverse perinatal and maternal outcomes. Increasing contraceptive uptake among postpartum adolescents may decrease these outcomes through pregnancy prevention. This randomized controlled trial of 100 postpartum adolescent women assessed the effect of a standardized immediate postpartum contraceptive counseling intervention emphasizing healthy birth spacing and the use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARC). Methods: After a baseline survey about reproductive health and pregnancy intentions, all subjects received routine postpartum contraceptive counseling. The intervention group also received the standardized counseling intervention. All participants had access to immediate postpartum contraceptive implant initiation or to intrauterine device (IUD) insertion at postpartum follow-up. Contraceptive use and repeat pregnancy were assessed quarterly for 12 months. Differences in repeat pregnancy, as well as contraceptive initiation, continuation, and satisfaction were analyzed. Results: There was no difference in repeat pregnancy or contraceptive initiation, continuation or satisfaction between the study groups. However, regardless of group assignment, all subjects who desired the contraceptive implant used the method, compared to 15% of subjects who desired the IUD (p < 0.001). Three pregnancies occurred among subjects who desired the IUD versus none amongst subjects who desired the implant (p = 0.10). Conclusions: This standardized postpartum contraceptive counseling intervention did not affect teens’ repeat pregnancies or contraceptive use. However, immediate postpartum availability of the contraceptive implant was associated with increased utilization of this method when compared to the IUD. Future postpartum contraceptive efforts should investigate procedures to improve teens’ access to postpartum contraception. Identifier: NCT01814930.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-369
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 5 2019


  • Adolescents
  • Contraception
  • Counseling
  • Postpartum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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