Counseling Adolescents About the Intrauterine Contraceptive Device: A Comparison of Primary Care Pediatricians With Family Physicians and Obstetrician-Gynecologists in the Bronx, New York

Susan E. Rubin, Hillel W. Cohen, John S. Santelli, Melissa D. McKee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


Background: The intrauterine device (IUD) is a highly effective contraceptive, yet not all primary care providers (PCPs) counsel adolescents about IUDs. We sought to describe PCPs’ frequency of counseling adolescents about IUDs and identify whether different factors are associated with frequent counseling by pediatricians compared with family physicians and gynecologists. Methods: Surveyed PCPs affiliated with a Bronx, New York academic institution. Main Outcome: Frequent counseling of female adolescents about IUDs. Results: Frequent counseling was lower in pediatricians compared with family physicians and gynecologists (35.8% and 81.6%, respectively, P <.001). Among all PCP types, frequent counseling was associated with feeling more competent counseling and managing expected IUD side effects (P <.001). Other significant variables included inserting IUDs themselves (P <.001, family physicians and gynecologists) or having access to an inserter in their office (P =.04, pediatricians). Conclusions: Correlates of frequent IUD counseling differed according to PCP specialty. Our results suggest that interventions to increase IUD counseling should focus on improving PCPs’ competency around counseling and side effect management as well as increasing access to IUD inserters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-169
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of primary care & community health
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015



  • adolescent female
  • community health service
  • counseling
  • intrauterine device
  • intrauterine device- copper
  • intrauterine device- medicated
  • physicians- primary care
  • primary health care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Community and Home Care
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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