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Quality of websites about long-acting reversible contraception: a descriptive cross-sectional study
Sophiahemmet University.
Sophiahemmet University.
The Swedish Red Cross University College. Karolinska Institutet.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2626-2335
The Swedish Red Cross University College, Department of Health Sciences. Sophiahemmet University / Uppsala University.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4141-8692
2019 (English)In: Reproductive Health, ISSN 1742-4755, E-ISSN 1742-4755, Vol. 16, no 1, article id 172Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND: Today, there are various short- and long-acting contraceptive alternatives available for those who wish to prevent unintended pregnancy. Long-acting reversible contraception are considered effective methods with a high user satisfaction. High-quality information about contraception is essential in order to empower individuals to reach informed decisions based on sufficient knowledge. Use of the Web for information about contraception is widespread, and there is a risk that those who use it for this purpose could come in contact with sources of low quality.

OBJECTIVE: The overarching aim was to investigate the quality of websites about long-acting reversible contraception.

METHODS: Swedish client-oriented websites were identified through searches in Google (n = 46 included websites). Reliability and information about long-acting reversible contraceptive choices were assessed by two assessors with the DISCERN instrument, transparency was analyzed with the Journal of the American Medical Association benchmarks, completeness was assessed with inductive content analysis and readability was analyzed with Readability Index.

RESULTS: The mean DISCERN was 44.1/80 (SD 7.7) for total score, 19.7/40 (SD 3.7) for reliability, 22.1/35 (SD 4.1) for information about long-acting reversible contraceptive choices, and 2.3/5 (SD 1.1) for overall quality. A majority of the included websites had low quality with regard to what sources were used to compile the information (n = 41/46, 89%), when the information was produced (n = 40/46, 87%), and if it provided additional sources of support and information (n = 30/46, 65%). Less than half of the websites adhered to any of the JAMA benchmarks. We identified 23 categories of comprehensiveness. The most frequent was contraceptive mechanism (n = 39/46, 85%) and the least frequent was when contraception may be initiated following an abortion (n = 3/46, 7%). The mean Readability Index was 42.5 (SD 6.3, Range 29-55) indicating moderate to difficult readability levels, corresponding to a grade level of 9.

CONCLUSIONS: The quality of client-oriented websites about long-acting reversible contraception is poor. There is an undeniable need to support and guide laypersons that intend to use web-based sources about contraceptive alternatives, so that they may reach informed decisions based on sufficient knowledge.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BioMed Central, 2019. Vol. 16, no 1, article id 172
Keywords [en]
Consumer health information, Long-acting reversible contraception, World wide web
National Category
Other Health Sciences Information Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:rkh:diva-3093DOI: 10.1186/s12978-019-0835-1PubMedID: 31775765OAI: oai:DiVA.org:rkh-3093DiVA, id: diva2:1376215
Available from: 2019-12-09 Created: 2019-12-09 Last updated: 2019-12-09Bibliographically approved

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Georgsson, SusanneCarlsson, Tommy

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