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Aust Fam Physician. 2017 Oct;46(10):710-715.

LARCs as first-line contraception - What can general practitioners advise young women?

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DHSc, MPH, BSc, is Associate Professor and Director, Research Training, General Practice, University of Melbourne, Victoria.



The use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) is globally accepted as a strategy that is successful in decreasing rates of unintended pregnancy, especially in very young women. Currently, Australia has very low uptake rates of LARC.


The aim of this paper is to explore the latest information on using LARCs as first-line contraception in young women.


Low uptake of LARCs may be related to Australia's prevailing cultural norm of oral contraception, and practitioner and patient misperceptions of the safety and efficacy of LARC, which have been dispelled in recent years. LARCs are widely recommended by professional bodies and the World Health Organization (WHO) as first-line contraception for young women as they are safe, effective and reversible. Young women should be offered the choice of a LARC as part of a fully informed decision for their first form of contraception.

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