IUC is highly effective, safe, and long-lasting, but is not a popular contraception method among British women. This study examined barriers to the uptake of IUC in general practice in England.

A sequential mixed-method approach to explore practitioners’ views regarding the provision of IUC. The researchers surveyed 208 practitioners from 69 practices in England and subsequently interviewed 14 practitioners from eight courses.

Lack of knowledge of IUC was a barrier to fitting and recommending IUC, especially by practitioners who were not prepared to provide. There was discordance between reported knowledge of eligibility for IUC and the likelihood of recommending IUC. Respondents were less likely to recommend IUC to young, nulliparous women, women who had experienced a previous ectopic pregnancy, a recent STI, or an abnormal cervical smear.

The study concluded that increased practitioner education, for those not trained to fit IUC, may remove a barrier to the uptake of IUC in general practice. More research is required to discuss the practitioners’ views on women’s characteristics considered suitable for IUC and the criteria set out in the UKMEC guidelines.

Reference: https://srh.bmj.com/content/44/2/82