Birth intervals and injectable contraception in sub-Saharan Africa

Ngianga-Bakwin, Kandala and Stones, R. William (2005) Birth intervals and injectable contraception in sub-Saharan Africa. Contraception, 71, (5), 353-356. (doi:10.1016/j.contraception.2004.10.013).


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The interval between births is associated with child survival in the developing world. We aimed to investigate associations between use of depot-medroxyprogesterone acetate and other reversible contraception and short birth intervals in sub-Saharan Africa.


Data from successive Demographic and Health Surveys undertaken in nine African countries were analyzed. Logistic regression was used to explain changes in the proportion of short birth intervals in four countries with relatively high use of reversible contraception.


The overall odds ratio for the trend was 0.90 (95% CI 0.84 to 0.95) and this was unaffected by adjusting for the other variables. The odds of a short birth interval were reduced by exclusive breastfeeding (OR 0.67, 95% CI 0.58 to 0.78) and increased by use of injectable contraception (OR 1.23, 95% CI 1.11 to 1.38).


The proportion of short birth intervals has changed little over the last decade in a context of very low use of the intrauterine device. Widespread adoption of injectable contraception is associated with greater odds of a short birth interval, thus not contributing favorable conditions for improved child health.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.contraception.2004.10.013
ISSNs: 0010-7824 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: birth intervals, injectable contraception, sub-saharan africa
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Medicine > Community Clinical Sciences
ePrint ID: 60814
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
May 2005Published
Date Deposited: 30 Sep 2008
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:43

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