Contraceptive methods of privately insured US women with congenital heart defects

Anderson KN, Tepper NK, Downing K, Ailes EC, Abarbanell G, Farr SL.
Am Heart J. 2020 Apr;222:38-45. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2020.01.008. Epub 2020 Jan 21.
PMID: 32014720
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Background: The American Heart Association recommends women with congenital heart defects (CHD) receive contraceptive counseling early in their reproductive years, but little is known about contraceptive method use among women with CHD. We describe recent female sterilization and reversible prescription contraceptive method use by presence of CHD and CHD severity in 2014.

Methods: Using IBM MarketScan Commercial Databases, we included women aged 15 to 44 years with prescription drug coverage in 2014 who were enrolled ≥11 months annually in employer-sponsored health plans between 2011 and 2014. CHD, CHD severity, contraceptive methods, and obstetrics-gynecology and cardiology provider encounters were identified using billing codes. We used log-binomial regression to calculate adjusted prevalence ratios (aPRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) to compare contraceptive method use overall and by effectiveness tier by CHD presence and, for women with CHD, severity.

Results: Recent sterilization or current reversible prescription contraceptive method use varied slightly among women with (39.2%) and without (37.3%) CHD, aPR = 1.04, 95% CI [1.01-1.07]. Women with CHD were more likely to use any Tier I method (12.9%) than women without CHD (9.3%), aPR = 1.41, 95% CI [1.33-1.50]. Women with severe, compared to non-severe, CHD were less likely to use any method, aPR = 0.85, 95% CI [0.78-0.92], or Tier I method, aPR = 0.84, 95% CI [0.70-0.99]. Approximately 60% of women with obstetrics-gynecology and <40% with cardiology encounters used any included method.

Conclusions: There may be missed opportunities for providers to improve uptake of safe, effective contraceptive methods for women with CHD who wish to avoid pregnancy.