SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

This research investigated the relationship of perceived contraceptive attributes to contraceptive choice. More specifically, the study a) examined what attributes women perceive as important in their choice of a contraceptive method; b) compared women who use the vaginal sponge with women who use oral contraceptives or the diaphragm on perceived importance of attributes; and c) compared sponge users with pill users and diaphragm users on perceived characteristics of three contraceptive methods. Data were collected in telephone interviews from a national sample of 330 current sponge users and 330 women who use other forms of female contraception. Those attributes that were rated highest concerned effectiveness and safety, whereas those that were rated lowest focused on convenience of use and interference with sexual activity. Women differed somewhat by user status on the attributes they believe are important in contraceptive choice, with each group emphasizing those attributes characterizing their own method. Moreover. each user group perceived their own method more favorably than did users of other methods. Perceptions of specific contraceptive methods. particularly the sponge. were more predictive of user status than were general importance ratings.