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Year : 1992  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 55-6

Profile of oral contraceptive usage by females of the northern part of West Bengal.

Deptt. of Pharmacology, North Bengal Medical College, Shushrutnagar, Darjeeling

Correspondence Address:
S K Tripathi
Deptt. of Pharmacology, North Bengal Medical College, Shushrutnagar, Darjeeling

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 1303987

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A hospital-based study was designed to find out the frequency of use of oral pills to reassess the relative incidence of adverse drug reactions (ADRS) and the possibility of drug interactions and also to review the role of physicians or hospital clinics in monitoring their use. A group of women of reproductive age attending the postpartum unit of North Bengal Medical College and Hospital and the immunization clinic for coverage of their children were interviewed during July-September, 1987. Out of 500 women studied 66 (13.2%) were using oral contraceptives (OCs). Females of younger age group used OCs more frequently (86.3%) and none above 35 years used them. The acceptance of OCs was based on doctor's recommendation in 47 users (71.21%), while for 19 (28.79%) it was based on the advice of either husband or friends or relatives. 44 (66.67%) of the users received their monthly quota of OCs free from government hospitals. OC use was not halted in spite of malnutrition (24.24%), obesity (27.27%), breathlessness on exertion (28.79%), lump in the breast (9.09%), or diabetes (9.09%). Visual disturbances were present in 12.12% of users. 17 (15.76%) of users smoked. Less than 6 months after childbirth 17 (25.76%) nursing mothers resumed OC use. 58 (87.88%) of 66 users used OCs continuously for less than 3 years, 8 (12.12%) used them continuously for 2-5 years, and none used them continuously for over 5 years. 30 OC users (45.45%) were also taking one or more drugs concurrently along with the OCs. The most frequent were oral anticoagulants, phenytoin, antitubercular drugs, chloroquine, antileprosy drugs, salbutamol, corticosteroids and some antibiotics. In all such cases the prescribing physicians never seemed to be concerned about taking the drug use history.

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