New contraceptive guidance reverses decades of advice

New advice that women can take the pill everyday is met with confusion -- and claims that it's the Pope's fault.

Lydia Morrish
Lydia Morrish NewsMavens, United Kingdom
New contraceptive guidance reverses decades of advice - NewsMavens
Birth Control Pills, PixaBay

Why this story matters:

Women have been losing trust in contraception.

Although the pill was introduced in the late 60s to resounding support from women and health professionals across the world, evidence that the hormonal contraceptive is linked to depression, mood swings, anxiety and unwanted physical symptoms has caused many women to stop taking it.

New clinical issuance guidelines by the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) state that the contraceptive pill can be taken back-to-back and that there is no health benefit to a seven-day break.

While the guidance will help some women take their health into their own hands, many are frustrated at the lack of accurate information surrounding the pill and the "trivialization" of reproductive health issues.

Details from the story:

  • This new Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) guidance goes back on 60 years of reproductive health advice.
  • The FSRH claims that it is safe for women to take the combined oral contraceptive pill back-to-back with no known health issues.
  • Claims that the guidance existed to appease the Pope have been widely circulated. Several reports claim that gynaecologist John Rock first devised the pill "break" in the hope that the Pope would accept the pill and make it acceptable for Catholics to use.
  • However, this claim has been refuted by Dr Alice Howarth, a clinical and molecular pharmacologist and cell biologist at the University of Liverpool, who cites sources suggesting the co-creators of the pill in fact convinced the Catholic church to approve of the contraceptive through its claims to nature -- that a break was more like the body's natural fluctuations of hormones.
inbox_large_illu Created with Sketch.
Tired of the news media’s prevailing male perspective? We are too.

Get our newsletters composed exclusively by female journalists from all over Europe.

WITH FINANCIAL SUPPORT FROM:
SUPPORTED BY:

Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

STRATEGIC PARTNERS:
NewsMavens
NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
Is something happening in your country that Newsmavens should cover?
CORE TEAM
Zuzanna Ziomecka
Zuzanna Ziomecka EDITOR IN CHIEF
Lea Berriault-Jauvin
Lea Berriault Managing Editor
Jessica Sirotin
Jessica Sirotin EDITOR
Ada Petriczko
Ada Petriczko EDITOR
Gazeta Wyborcza, Agora SA Czerska 8/10 00-732, Warsaw Poland
The e-mail addresses provided above are not intended for recruitment purposes. Messages concerning recruitment will be deleted immediately. Your personal data provided as part of your correspondence with Zuzanna,Lea, Jessica and Ada will be processed for the purpose of resolving the issue you contacted us about. The data provided in your email is controlled by Agora S.A. with its registered office in Warsaw Czerska 8/10 Street (00-732). You can find more information about the processing and protection of your personal data at https://newsmavens.com/transparency-policy
System.Threading.Tasks.Task`1[System.Threading.Tasks.VoidTaskResult];