Intrauterine contraception for adolescents aged 14-18 years: a multicenter randomized pilot study of levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system compared to the Copper T 380A

Contraception. 2010 Feb;81(2):123-7. doi: 10.1016/j.contraception.2009.09.004. Epub 2009 Oct 8.


Background: Intrauterine contraception can provide adolescents with effective, long-term contraception as well as with other health benefits. In adult populations, intrauterine contraception rates highly in patient satisfaction and safety. It is rarely prescribed to adolescents because of limited data.

Study design: Multicenter, randomized, controlled, participant-blinded pilot study of 14-18-year-old females assigned to the Copper T 380A intrauterine device or the Levonorgestrel Intrauterine System. Participants were followed up for 6 months following insertion.

Results: We enrolled 23 participants; 12 received the Levonorgestrel Intrauterine System, and 11 received the Copper T 380A. At 6 months, the continuation rates were 75% for the Levonorgestrel Intrauterine System users and 45% for the Copper T 380A users (p=.15). Two Copper T 380A users experienced partial expulsion. Heavy bleeding and pelvic pain were the most commonly reported side effects. Participants rated both methods favorably.

Conclusions: This study shows that at 6 months, though not statistically significant, adolescent continuation rates trended towards being greater with the Levonorgestrel Intrauterine System compared to the Copper T 380A. These pilot data will be helpful in the design of a larger trial of intrauterine contraception use among adolescents.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Contraception / methods
  • Contraceptive Agents, Female / adverse effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intention to Treat Analysis
  • Intrauterine Devices, Copper / adverse effects*
  • Intrauterine Devices, Medicated / adverse effects*
  • Levonorgestrel / administration & dosage*
  • Levonorgestrel / adverse effects*
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Single-Blind Method


  • Contraceptive Agents, Female
  • Levonorgestrel