Objectives: The aim of this study is to determine the number of sperm present in the vagina of women presenting for EC after unprotected intercourse or a condom accident. Study design: A total of 69 women requesting EC were included in a prospective, observational and comparative study. The absence or presence and number of spermatozoa present were examined under light microscopy in endocervical and vaginal smears. An ethinylestradiol-levonorgestrel combination (100 mcg/500 mg for two doses, 12 h apart) was then prescribed. Twenty couples were taken as controls. Results: In 25 (36.2%) of the 69 women, spermatozoa were not observed. In the women in whom sperm could be identified, there were no significant differences in the mean (range) sperm count in relation to the reason for requesting EC, i.e., 11.0 (0.03-149.8) for condom slippage or breakage, and 8.1 (3.9-55) for unprotected intercourse. In the group of controls the median (range) number of spermatozoa (32.5 (2.5-304) was significantly higher (p = 0.04) than the observed in the study group. Conclusions: In one-third of the women presenting for EC, no sperm were identified in the vagina. When sperm were present, the number was much lower than that after intercourse among women wishing to conceive. The risk of an unwanted pregnancy is probably, therefore, lower for women who present for EC compared with that for women who truly have unprotected intercourse. © 2006 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
|Journal||European Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2007|
- Emergency contraception
- Emergency contraceptive pills
- Postcoital contraception
- Yuzpe regimen