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Committee Opinion No. 710 Summary: Counseling Adolescents About Contraception

doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002228
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ABSTRACT Modern contraceptives are very effective when used correctly and, thus, effective counseling regarding contraceptive options and provision of resources to increase access are key components of adolescent health care. Regardless of a patient’s age or previous sexual activity, the obstetrician–gynecologist routinely should address her contraceptive needs, expectations, and concerns. Obstetrician–gynecologists should be aware of and be prepared to address the most common misperceptions about contraceptive methods in a way that is age appropriate and compatible with the patient’s health literacy. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that discussions about contraception begin with information on the most effective methods first. Emergency contraception routinely should be included in discussions about contraception, including access issues. Moreover, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that obstetrician–gynecologists work with their office staff to establish office procedures and routines that safeguard the privacy of adolescent patients whenever possible. Adolescents’ right of refusal for initiating or discontinuing a method should be addressed by obstetrician–gynecologists. At no time should an adolescent patient be forced to use a method chosen by someone other than herself, including a parent, guardian, partner, or health care provider. The initial encounter and follow-up visits should include continual reassessment of sexual concerns, behavior, relationships, prevention strategies, and testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines.

For a comprehensive overview of these recommendations, the full-text version of this Committee Opinion is available athttp://dx.doi.org/10.1097/AOG.0000000000002234.

Committee on Adolescent Health Care:This Committee Opinion was developed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ Committee on Adolescent Health Care in collaboration with committee member Karen R. Gerancher, MD.

Copyright August 2017 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, posted on the Internet, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from the publisher.

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Official Citation: Counseling adolescents about contraception. Committee Opinion No. 710. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstet Gynecol 2017;130:e74–80.

This information is designed as an educational resource to aid clinicians in providing obstetric and gynecologic care, and use of this information is voluntary. This information should not be considered as inclusive of all proper treatments or methods of care or as a statement of the standard of care. It is not intended to substitute for the independent professional judgment of the treating clinician. Variations in practice may be warranted when, in the reasonable judgment of the treating clinician, such course of action is indicated by the condition of the patient, limitations of available resources, or advances in knowledge or technology. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists reviews its publications regularly; however, its publications may not reflect the most recent evidence. Any updates to this document can be found onwww.acog.orgor by calling the ACOG Resource Center.

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Received July 04, 2017

Accepted July 04, 2017

© 2017 by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.