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    The effectiveness of the ovulation method of natural family planning: a prospective multicentre trial--the Bangalore Centre.

    World Health Organization [WHO]. Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction

    Bangalore, India, WHO, [1980]. 5 p.

    In 1976, a prospective study of the ovulation method was conducted in 5 centres (Bangalore, Auckland, Dublin, Manila, San Miguel) to determine the proportion of women who are capable of recognizing the changes in cervical mucus during the menstrual cycle and also the use-effectiveness of the method in fertility control. 12 subcenters in and around the city of Bangalore were selected. There were 13 teachers, 8 of whom were active throughout the study and were appointed to recruit volunteers for the study. 205 ovulating women with histories of regular menstrual cycles were admitted to the teaching phase of the study. Mean age of the group was 28.6 years. Majority (54%) belonged to the Catholic religion. The rest were Hindus (32%), Protestants (6%), and Muslims. Couples were drawn from both the urban and rural areas and were mostly illiterate or semiliterate. None of the women had used the ovulation method before. 55% of the couples cited religious reasons as the main factor for using the ovulation method. In the cycle following instruction, understanding of the method was evaluated as 'excellent or good' in 96.6% of the cases; in the 2nd and 3rd cycles, the figure rose to 97% with regard to interpretable mucus pattern. Following successful completion of the teaching phase, 191 out of 205 enrolled in the teaching phase entered the effectiveness phase of 13 cycles. Most agreed to go further to 16 cycles and did so successfully. Some women with alcoholic husbands were able to use the method successfully, a commendable result since other family planning workers had difficulty motivating this group. A paradoxical finding which needed further analysis was the more educated the women, the more difficult it was for her to accept the method or to follow it up as required. In the entire study, Pearl rates for method failure ranged from 9.5/100 women years in Auckland, 5.1 in Dublin, 1.1 in Manila, to 0 in Bangalore and San Miguel. The use-effectiveness of the method in Bangalore was 96% in over 7514 cycles of observation. WHO recommended that the ovulation method be used in India.
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