Discontinuation of hormonal contraception in Oman: prevalence and reasons

Fatma Al-Ghashri, Habiba Al-Harthi, Maryam Al Shukri, Asma Al Shidhani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Discontinuation of hormonal contraceptives is an important contributor to unmet need of contraception.

Aims: To determine the discontinuation rate and the reasons for discontinuation of hormonal contraception among Omani women.

Methods: This was a 2-stage sampling, multicentre, retrospective cohort study conducted in 2018 at primary health care centres in Muscat Region, Oman. It included newly registered users of hormonal contraceptives in birth spacing clinics from January to December 2016 and the course of care over the following 12 months. A telephone interview was conducted to complement some of the missing data. The contraceptive methods available were combined oral contraceptives, progesterone only pills and injectable depot medroxyprogesterone acetate.

Results: We included 404 women and 87.8% were breast-feeding. By the end of the first year, (268; 66.3%) women discontinued their contraceptive method. More than half (55.2% 148/268) of the discontinuation was attributed to adverse effects and the most prevalent was menstrual abnormality (102/268; 38.1%). Only 5.6% (15/268) discontinued contraception because they desired pregnancy. Partners and logistics of availability and access played a minimal role in discontinuation. Age and number of children did not influence the discontinuation rate.

Conclusion: This study improves our knowledge about the rate of discontinuation of hormonal contraception and its related factors in Oman, which can be used for population-specific counselling. Future research should study the contraception behaviour of breast-feeding women to assess when and why they discontinue their contraceptive methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)993-1000
Number of pages8
JournalEastern Mediterranean health journal = La revue de sante de la Mediterranee orientale = al-Majallah al-sihhiyah li-sharq al-mutawassit
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 27 2021


  • Contraception
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female
  • Contraceptives, Oral, Hormonal/adverse effects
  • Female
  • Hormonal Contraception
  • Humans
  • Oman/epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies


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