Effect of peer counselors on adolescent compliance in use of oral contraceptives

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Abstract

Poor compliance with contraceptive regimens has been shown to be an important antecedent of adolescent pregnancy. The purpose of this study was to test prospectively the effect of a peer v nurse counseling program on adolescent compliance with the use of oral contraceptives. Fifty-seven females aged 14 to 19 years from a lower socioeconomic background were randomly assigned to a peer (n = 26) or nurse (n = 31) group. At the initial visit and at 1-, 2- and 4-month follow-up visits, subjects received Ortho-Novum 1/35 combined with a tablet marker and were counseled by a nurse or peer. Noncompliance was measured using a Guttman scale consisting of: (1) avoidance of pregnancy, (2) appointment adherence, (3) pill count, and (4) urinary fluorescence for riboflavin. At the first and second follow-ups, the adolescents counseled by a peer had a significantly (P ≤.038) lower noncompliance level than the nurse-counseled group. Adolescents with more frequent sexual activity (P ≤.027) with one sexual partner (P <.04) and who worried that they might become pregnant (P ≤.01) had significantly lower levels of noncompliance when counseled by a peer than by a nurse. At the fourth month follow-up, adolescents who expressed feelings of hopelessness about the future had significantly (P ≤.036) higher levels of noncompliance when counseled by a nurse than when counseled by a peer. These results suggest that incorporating a peer counseler into the health care team may be an effective method of increasing adolescent compliance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-131
Number of pages6
JournalPediatrics
Volume73
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 5 1984

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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Effect of peer counselors on adolescent compliance in use of oral contraceptives. / Jay, M. S.; DuRant, R. H.; Shoffitt, T.; Linder, Charles W; Litt, I. F.

In: Pediatrics, Vol. 73, No. 2, 05.04.1984, p. 126-131.

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