Original Research

Contraceptive practices amongst HIV-positive women on antiretroviral therapy attending an ART clinic in South Africa

Ezekiel E. Oni, Andrew Ross, Stephan van der Linde
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 5, No 1 | a461 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v5i1.461 | © 2013 Ezekiel E. Oni, Andrew Ross, Stephan van der Linde | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 May 2012 | Published: 08 May 2013

About the author(s)

Ezekiel E. Oni, Department of Family Medicine, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Andrew Ross, Department of Family Medicine, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Stephan van der Linde, Department of Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa


Background: Effective contraceptive practices amongst HIV-positive women of reproductive age have been shown to reduce mother-to-child transmission of HIV by preventing unplanned pregnancies. However, most antiretroviral therapy (ART) programmes focus on treatment,neglecting comprehensive contraceptive services. This results in a high frequency of pregnancies amongst HIV-positive women attending the ART clinic of a regional hospital north of Durban.

Objectives: This research aimed to explore contraceptive use amongst HIV-positive women attending an ART clinic by determining, (1) prevalence of contraceptive use, (2) pregnancy rate, (3) contraceptive preferences and (4) factors associated with contraceptive use.

Methods: In this observational, analytical, cross-sectional study of 420 women, aged 15to 49 years, participants were selected by systematic random sampling. They completed standardised questionnaires.

Results: Of all participants, 95% of the participants used contraception. Factors associated with contraceptive practice were knowledge of HIV status 292 (72.8%), health worker advice 84 (20.9%), and spousal insistence 33 (8.2%). Of the 130 women (31%) who had fallen pregnant whilst on ART, 73 (56.2%) said that the pregnancy had been unplanned, whilst 57 (43.8%) had wanted to fall pregnant because of: partner’s insistence (45.6%), desire for a child (36.8%),desire to conceal HIV status (15.8%), not wanting to die childless (5.3%), and death of aprevious child (1.8%).

Conclusion: Contraceptive use amongst these women was high but the number of pregnancies is a cause for concern. Information regarding contraceptive use should therefore be providedat all ART clinics.


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Crossref Citations

1. Contraceptive use and associated factors among women of reproductive age on antiretroviral therapy in Awabel Woreda health centers, Northwest Ethiopia
Menichil Amsalu, Kalkidan worku, Mulugeta Ayalew, Alehegn Aderaw Alamneh
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