CSIRO Publishing blank image blank image blank image blank imageBooksblank image blank image blank image blank imageJournalsblank image blank image blank image blank imageAbout Usblank image blank image blank image blank imageShopping Cartblank image blank image blank image You are here: Journals > Sexual Health   
Sexual Health
Journal Banner
  Publishing on sexual health from the widest perspective
 
blank image Search
 
blank image blank image
blank image
 
  Advanced Search
   

Journal Home
About the Journal
Editorial Committee
Contacts
Content
Online Early
Current Issue
Just Accepted
All Issues
Special Issues
Sample Issue
Call for Papers
For Authors
General Information
Instructions to Authors
Submit Article
Open Access
For Referees
Referee Guidelines
Review Article
Annual Referee Index
For Advertisers
For Subscribers
Subscription Prices
Customer Service

blue arrow e-Alerts
blank image
Subscribe to our Email Alert or RSS feeds for the latest journal papers.

red arrow Connect with us
blank image
facebook twitter youtube

red arrow Interview with Kit Fairley
blank image
Hear Kit Fairley speak about what is sexual health.

red arrow Call for Papers
blank image
We are seeking contributions for a Special Issue.. More

 

Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 9(1)

A review of the effectiveness and acceptability of the female condom for dual protection

Maria F. Gallo A C , Maggie Kilbourne-Brook B and Patricia S. Coffey B

A Division of Reproductive Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA.
B Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH), Seattle, WA, USA.
C Corresponding author. Email: mgallo@cdc.gov

Sexual Health 9(1) 18-26 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/SH11037
Submitted: 3 March 2011  Accepted: 26 September 2011   Published: 9 January 2012


 
PDF (146 KB) $25
 Export Citation
 Print
  
Abstract

The female condom remains the sole female-initiated method of dual protection against unintended pregnancy and sexually transmissible infections (STIs), including HIV. We reviewed published data on the effectiveness and acceptability of the female condom for protection against pregnancy and infection. Overall, use of the female condom is low and several barriers hinder the wider adoption of the use of the method. Research on effectiveness has focussed on pregnancy, STIs and biological markers of semen exposure. Although the data available suggest that female condoms (or a mixture of female and male condoms) may provide similar degrees of protection against pregnancy and STIs as do latex male condoms alone, this conclusion has not been demonstrated and thus comparative research is urgently needed.

Additional keywords: FC1, FC2, Femidom, Reddy Condom, Woman’s Condom.


References

[1]  UNAIDS. (2008) Report on the global AIDS epidemic. Geneva: UNAIDS; 2008.

[2]  Boily MC, Baggaley RF, Wang L, Masse B, White RG, Hayes RJ, et al Heterosexual risk of HIV-1 infection per sexual act: systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies. Lancet Infect Dis 2009; 9: 118–29.
CrossRef |

[3]  Ashford L. Unmet need for family planning: recent trends and their implications for programs. Washington: Population Reference Bureau Policy Brief; 2003.

[4]  United Nations Population Fund (UNPF). State of world population 2005. The promise of equality, gender equity, reproductive health and the millennium development goals. New York: UNPF; 2005.

[5]  World Health Organization (WHO), Department of Reproductive Health and Research. Female condom technical review committee. Geneva: WHO; 2007.

[6]  Beksinska M, Smith J, Joanis C, Usher-Patel M, Potter W. Female condom technology: new products and regulatory issues. Contraception 2011; 83: 316–21.
CrossRef |

[7]  Schwartz JL, Barnhart K, Creinin MD, Poindexter A, Wheeless A, Kilbourne-Brook M, et al Comparative crossover study of the PATH Woman’s Condom and the FC female condom. Contraception 2008; 78: 465–73.
CrossRef |

[8]  Coffey PS, Kilbourne-Brook M, Austin G, Seamans Y, Cohen J. Short-term acceptability of the PATH Woman’s Condom among couples at three sites. Contraception 2006; 73: 588–93.
CrossRef |

[9]  Hou LY, Qiu HY, Zhao YZ, Zeng XS, Cheng YM. A crossover comparison of two types of female condom. Int J Gynaecol Obstet 2010; 108: 214–8.
CrossRef |

[10]  Drew WL, Blair M, Miner RC, Conant M. Evaluation of the virus permeability of a new condom for women. Sex Transm Dis 1990; 17: 110–2.
CrossRef |

[11]  Leeper MA, Conrardy M. Preliminary evaluation of Reality, a condom for women to wear. Adv Contracept 1989; 5: 229–35.
CrossRef |

[12]  Bounds W, Guillebaud J, Newman GB. Female condom (Femidom): a clinical study of its use-effectiveness and patient acceptability. Br J Fam Plann 1992; 18: 36–41.

[13]  Farr G, Gabelnick H, Sturgen K, Dorflinger L. Contraceptive efficacy and acceptability of the female condom. Am J Public Health 1994; 84: 1960–4.
CrossRef |

[14]  Trussell J. Contraceptive efficacy of the Reality female condom. Contraception 1998; 58: 147–8.
CrossRef |

[15]  Trussell J. Contraceptive efficacy. In Hatcher RA, Trussell J, Nelson A, Cates W Jr, Kowal D, editors. Contraceptive Technology. 20th edition. New York: Ardent Media, Inc., in press.

[16]  Soper DE, Shoupe D, Shangold GA, Shangold MM, Gutmann J, Mercer L. Prevention of vaginal trichomoniasis by compliant use of the female condom. Sex Transm Dis 1993; 20: 137–9.
CrossRef |

[17]  French PP, Latka M, Gollub EL, Rogers C, Hoover DR, Stein ZA. Use-effectiveness of the female versus male condom in preventing sexually transmitted disease in women. Sex Transm Dis 2003; 30: 433–9.
CrossRef |

[18]  Fontanet AL , Saba J, Chandelying V, Sakondhavat C, Bhiraleus P, Rugpao S, et al Protection against sexually transmitted diseases by granting sex workers in Thailand the choice of using the male or female condom: results from a randomized controlled trial. AIDS 1998; 12: 1851–9.
CrossRef |

[19]  Feldblum PJ, Kuyoh MA, Bwayo JJ, Omari M, Wong EL, Tweedy KG, et al Female condom introduction and sexually transmitted infection prevalence: results of a community intervention trial in Kenya. AIDS 2001; 15: 1037–44.
CrossRef |

[20]  Welsh MJ, Feldblum PJ, Kuyoh MA, Mwarogo P, Kungu D. Condom use during a community intervention trial in Kenya. Int J STD AIDS 2001; 12: 469–74.
CrossRef |

[21]  Macaluso M, Artz L, Kelaghan J, Austin H, Fleenor M, Hook EW. Prospective study of barrier contraception for the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases: study design and general characteristics of the study group. Sex Transm Dis 1999; 26: 127–36.
CrossRef |

[22]  Macaluso M, Artz L, Austin H, Fleenor M, Robey L, Kelaghan J, et al. His condom or her condom? A comparative efficacy study among women at high STD risk. Final Report for NIH Contract N01HD3135. Birmingham: UAB Department of Epidemiology; 1996.

[23]  Beksinska M, Joanis C, Manning J, Smit J, Callahan M, Deperthes B, et al Standardized definitions of failure modes for female condoms. Contraception 2007; 75: 251–5.
CrossRef |

[24]  Ruminjo JK, Steiner M, Joanis C, Mwathe EG, Thagana N. Preliminary comparison of the polyurethane female condom with the latex male condom in Kenya. East Afr Med J 1996; 73: 101–6.

[25]  Macaluso M, Lawson ML, Hortin G, Duerr A, Hammond KR, Blackwell R, et al Efficacy of the female condom as a barrier to semen during intercourse. Am J Epidemiol 2003; 157: 289–97.
CrossRef |

[26]  Galvão LW, Oliveira LC, Díaz J, Kim DJ, Marchi N, van Dam J, et al Effectiveness of female and male condoms in preventing exposure to semen during vaginal intercourse: a randomized trial. Contraception 2005; 71: 130–6.
CrossRef |

[27]  Valappil T, Kelaghan J, Macaluso M, Artz L, Austin H, Fleenor ME, et al Female condom and male condom failure among women at high risk of sexually transmitted diseases. Sex Transm Dis 2005; 32: 35–43.
CrossRef |

[28]  Beksinska M, Smit J, Mabude Z, Vijayakumar G, Joanis C. Performance of the Reality polyurethane female condom and a synthetic latex prototype: a randomized crossover trial among South African women. Contraception 2006; 73: 386–93.
CrossRef |

[29]  Macaluso M, Blackwell R, Jamieson DJ, Kulczycki A, Chen MP, Akers R, et al Efficacy of the male latex condom and of the female polyurethane condom as barriers to semen during intercourse: a randomized clinical trial. Am J Epidemiol 2007; 166: 88–96.
CrossRef |

[30]  Joanis C, Beksinska M, Hart C, Tweedy K, Linda J, Smit J. Three new female condoms: which do South-African women prefer? Contraception 2011; 83: 248–54.
CrossRef |

[31]  Chen MP, Macaluso M, Blackwell R, Galvao L, Kulczycki A, Diaz J, et al Self-reported mechanical problems during condom use and semen exposure. Comparison of two randomized trials in the United States of America and Brazil. Sex Transm Dis 2007; 34: 557–62.

[32]  Mauck CK, Weaver MA, Schwartz JL, Walsh T, Joanis C. Critical next steps for female condom research – report from a workshop. Contraception 2009; 79: 339–44.
CrossRef |

[33]  UNDP/UNFPA/WHO/World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction. The female condom: a review. Geneva: World Health Organization; 1997.

[34]  Hoffman S, Mantell J, Exner T, Stein Z. The future of the female condom. Int Fam Plan Perspect 2004; 30: 139–45.
CrossRef |

[35]  Mosher WD, Martinez GM, Chandra A, Abma JC, Willson SJ. Use of contraception and use of family planning services in the United States: 1982–2002. Advance Data From Vital and Health Statistics CDC No 2004; 350: ­1–36.

[36]  Lader D. Contraception and sexual health 2008/2009. A report on research using the National Statistics. Opinions Survey produced on behalf of the NHS Information Centre for health and social care. Surrey: Office for National Statistics; 2009. Available online at: http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/contra2008-9.pdf [verified November 2010].

[37]  Barbosa RM, Kalckmann S, Berquó E, Stein Z. Notes on the female condom: experiences in Brazil. Int J STD AIDS 2007; 18: 261–6.
CrossRef |

[38]  Warren M, Philpott A. Expanding safer sex options: introducing the female condom into national programmes. Reprod Health Matters 2003; 11: 130–9.
CrossRef |

[39]  United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). Donor support for contraceptives and condoms for STI/HIV prevention. New York: UNFPA; 2008.

[40]  United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Deliver Project. Public Health Procurement Guide and Product Catalog 2010. Washington: USAID; 2010. Available online at: http://deliver.jsi.com/dlvr_content/resources/allpubs/guidelines/CPTGuideCata2010.pdf [verified December 2010].

[41]  World Health Organization Considerations regarding re-use of the female condom: information update, 10 July 2002. Reprod Health Matters 2002; 10: 182–6.

[42]  Dowdy DW, Sweat MD, Holtgrave DR. Country-wide distribution of the nitrile female condom (FC2) in Brazil and South Africa: a cost-effectiveness analysis. AIDS 2006; 20: 2091–8.
CrossRef |

[43]  Peters A, Jansen W, van Driel F. The female condom: the international denial of a strong potential. Reprod Health Matters 2010; 18: 119–28.
CrossRef |

[44]  The female condom: still an underused prevention tool [editorial]. Lancet Infect Dis 2008; 8: 343.
CrossRef |

[45]  Latka M. Female-initiated barrier methods for the prevention of STI/HIV: where are we now? Where should we go? J Urban Health 2001; 78: 571–80.
CrossRef |

[46]  Spaar A, Graber C, Dabis F, Coutsoudis A, Bachmann L, McIntyre J, et al Prioritising prevention strategies for patients in antiretroviral treatment programmes in resource-limited settings. AIDS Care 2010; 22: 775–83.
CrossRef |

[47]  Artz L, Demand M, Pulley L, Posner SF, Macaluso M. Predictors of difficulty inserting the female condom. Contraception 2002; 65: 151–7.
CrossRef |

[48]  Green G, Pool R, Harrison S, Hart GJ, Wilkinson J, Nyanzi S, et al Female control of sexuality: illusion or reality? Use of vaginal products in south west Uganda. Soc Sci Med 2001; 52: 585–98.
CrossRef |

[49]  Kaler A. “It’s some kind of women’s empowerment”: the ambiguity of the female condom as a marker of female empowerment. Soc Sci Med 2001; 52: 783–96.
CrossRef |

[50]  Gollub EL. The female condom: tool for women’s empowerment. Am J Public Health 2000; 90: 1377–81.
CrossRef |

[51]  Mantell JE, Stein ZA, Susser I. Women in the time of AIDS: barriers, bargains, and benefits. AIDS Educ Prev 2008; 20: 91–106.
CrossRef |

[52]  Telles Dias PR, Souto K, Page-Shafer K. Long-term female condom use among vulnerable populations in Brazil. AIDS Behav 2006; 10: S67–75.
CrossRef |

[53]  Smita J, Neelam J, Rochelle DY, Kumar BK, Callahan M, Suniti S, et al Comparative acceptability study of the Reality female condom and the version 4 of modified Reddy female condom in India. Contraception 2005; 72: 366–71.
CrossRef |

[54]  Ray S, Bassett M, Maposhere C, Manangazira P, Nicolette JD, Machekano R, et al Acceptability of the female condom in Zimbabwe: positive but male-centred responses. Reprod Health Matters 1995; 3: 68–79.
CrossRef |

[55]  Choi K-H, Gregorich S, Anderson K, Grinstead O, Gomez C. Patterns and predictors of female condom use among ethnically diverse women attending family planning clinics. Sex Transm Dis 2003; 30: 91–8.
CrossRef |

[56]  Philpott A, Knerr W, Maher D. Promoting protection and pleasure: amplifying the effectiveness of barriers against sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy. Lancet 2006; 368: 2028–31.
CrossRef |

[57]  Pool R, Hart G, Green G, Harrison S, Nyanzi S, Whitworth JAG. Men’s attitudes to condoms and female controlled means of protection against HIV and STDs in south-western Uganda. Cult Health Sex 2000; 2: 197–211.
CrossRef |

[58]  Wolitski RJ, Halkitis PN, Parsons JT, Gomez CA. Awareness and use of untested barrier methods by HIV-seropositive gay and bisexual men. AIDS Educ Prev 2001; 13: 291–301.
CrossRef |

[59]  Gibson S, McFarland W, Wohlfeiler D, Scheer K, Katz MH. Experiences of 100 men who have sex with men using the Reality condom for anal sex. AIDS Educ Prev 1999; 11: 65–71.

[60]  Gross M, Buchbinder SP, Holte S, Celum CL, Koblin BA, Douglas JM. Use of Reality “female condoms” for anal sex by US men who have sex with men. Am J Public Health 1999; 89: 1739–41.
CrossRef |

[61]  Mantell JE, Kelvin EA, Exner TM, Hoffman S, Needham S, Stein ZA. Anal use of the female condom: does uncertainty justify provider inaction? AIDS Care 2009; 21: 1185–94.
CrossRef |

[62]  Renzi C, Tabet SR, Stucky JA, Eaton N, Coletti AS, Surawicz CM, et al Safety and acceptability of the Reality condom for anal sex among men who have sex with men. AIDS 2003; 17: 727–31.
CrossRef |

[63]  Kelvin EA, Smith RA, Mantell JE, Stein ZA. Adding the female condom to the public health agenda on prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections among men and women during anal intercourse. Am J Public Health 2009; 99: 985–7.
CrossRef |


   
Subscriber Login
Username:
Password:  

 
    
Legal & Privacy | Contact Us | Help

CSIRO

© CSIRO 1996-2014