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Outcomes of women referred for sterilisation
  1. Rebekah A Smith, MRCOG, DFFP, Specialist Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology1 and
  2. Elizabeth A Martindale, MRCOG, MFFP, Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist2
  1. Maternal and Fetal Health Research Centre, St Mary's Hospital, Manchester, UK
  2. Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Queen's Park Hospital, Blackburn, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Rebekah Smith, Maternal and Fetal Health Research Centre, St Mary's Hospital, Hathersage Road, Manchester M13 0JH, UK. E-mail: rasmith{at}


Objective To evaluate whether women referred to a gynaecology clinic requesting sterilisation were receiving appropriate counselling about sterilisation and other forms of long-term contraception, and to determine the proportion of women who ultimately underwent sterilisation.

Methods A retrospective audit of 100 women referred requesting sterilisation.

Results 15% of women referred did not attend the clinic, 54% had sterilisation and 29% ultimately chose an alternative method. Alternative forms of contraception discussed were levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system (69%), vasectomy (34%) and subdermal progestogen implants (21%). At the clinic 70 (82%) women chose sterilisation; however, 15 (21%) of these women cancelled the operation.

Conclusions Almost half of the women referred for sterilisation did not proceed with it, suggesting that there was insufficient counselling about sterilisation and alternative long-term contraception before referral to the gynaecology clinic and also within the clinic itself.

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