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YouTube and the single-rod contraceptive implant: a content analysis
  1. Jennifer Paul1,2,
  2. Christy M Boraas2,3,
  3. Mildred Duvet2,4,
  4. Judy C Chang2,5,6
  1. 1Kaiser Permanente, Greater Baltimore Medical Center, 7141 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, MD, USA
  2. 2Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
  3. 3Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women's Health, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN, USA
  4. 4Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Leigh Valley Health Network, Allentown, PA, USA
  5. 5Magee-Womens Research Institute, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
  6. 6Center for Research in Health Care/Center for Women's Health Research and Innovation, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Judy C Chang, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, Magee-Womens Research Institute, 3380 Boulevard of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA; jchang{at}


Background Since the internet has become an important source of contraceptive information with as the second most visited site, we analysed contraceptive implant YouTube videos for content and clinical accuracy.

Methods Using the terms ‘contraceptive implant’, ‘Nexplanon’ and ‘Implanon’, the top 20 results on YouTube by relevance and view count were identified. After excluding duplicates, single-rod implant videos in English were included. Videos were classified as providing a professional or patient perspective. Views, duration and comments were noted. Videos were rated for reliability, global quality scale and whether they were positive or negative about the implant. Inter-rater agreement was measured.

Results A total of 120 videos were retrieved; 52 were eligible for review. Less than 23% were professional videos; the majority reported patient experience (46% testimonials, 27% real-time procedure videos, 4% other). Patient videos had been posted a significantly longer duration of time than professional videos (364 vs 188 days, p=0.02), were less reliable (p≤0.0001) and were of lower global quality (p<0.0001). Some 61% of implant testimonial videos were rated as ‘positive experiences’ and inter-rater agreement was very good (κ=0.81). All testimonials mentioned side effects, commonly irregular bleeding and discomfort with insertion. A minority (26%) reported misinformation.

Conclusions This study found that most of the information on YouTube pertaining to contraceptive implants is accurate, is presented from the patient's perspective, and promotes the method's use.

  • contraceptive implant
  • family planning
  • YouTube
  • social media

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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