The influence of male partners on contraceptive usage in sub-Saharan Africa- Lagos experience

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Habeebu- Adeyemi, F.M
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Wolters Kluwer India Private Limited
Background: Family planning programs, researches, and studies have focused mainly on women with little attention to men’s role in the contraceptive choices by the couple. Men’s exclusion from these programs has serious implications on the acceptance and use of contraceptives by the couple. Objective: To determine the influence of male partners on contraceptive use of their spouses. Subjects and Methods: This was a cross‑sectional descriptive study at a Tertiary Care Centre in Lagos, Nigeria. It was conducted from January 1 to April 30, 2010, where all consecutive consenting pregnant women were given structured questionnaires to give to their partners so as to evaluate the contribution of the male partners to contraceptives use in their spouses as well as assess their awareness and knowledge of contraception. Categorical variables were analyzed using Chi‑square test or Fisher’s exact test as appropriate while continuous variables by t‑test. P < 0.05 was considered significant. Results: Of the 370 respondents, only 51.9% (192) knew about female contraceptive methods, while 50% (185) were willing to allow their wives to use contraception. Barrier method (17.3%) and periodic abstinence (15.7%) were the leading preferred choice for their wives. However, bilateral tubal ligation was the least preferred method (1.6%). Previous counseling of male partner significantly influenced their decision to allow their wives to use contraceptives (P = 0.001). Conclusion: Involving the male partner in family planning counseling plays an important role in increasing the acceptance and use of contraceptives by the couple.
Contraceptive use, male partner influence, family planning