Past Pill Use Doesn't Lower Fertility
Study: Pregnancy Rate Same for Past Users, Nonusers of Oral Contraceptives
WebMD News Archive
The Study continued...
In the study, the median time to conception was three months after stopping
the pill (half the women got pregnant earlier, half conceived later).
"The effect of age [on fertility] was not amplified by oral
contraceptive use," Cronin tells WebMD.
Nor did long-term use of the pill have a major impact on fertility, Cronin's
team found. While 79.3% of women on the pill less than two years became
pregnant in the year after stopping it, 81% of women on the pill more than two
years got pregnant in the first year after stopping it.
No Need to Wait
The new study seems to refute previous research that the pregnancy rate is
lower than normal in the first few months after women stop the pill, says
Richard Frieder, MD, attending physician at Santa Monica-UCLA and Orthopaedic
Hospital in California and assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and
gynecology at the University of California Los Angeles David Geffen School of
Medicine. "This study suggests even in the initial couple of months [after
stopping the pill], there is no difference in pregnancy rates [among past pill
users and nonusers]," he says.
In the past, Frieder says, some doctors may have advised women to wait
before trying to get pregnant for a number of reasons. That time lag, for
instance, would allow the woman to ovulate and have a menstrual period, and the
obstetrician could more easily gauge the delivery date.
"In these times, we have ultrasound [to date the beginning of the
pregnancy]," he says. "So there's really no reason to wait [a while
after going off the pill to try to get pregnant]."