Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series: Home Page Contraceptive Technology and Reproductive Health Series Back to FHI Website
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Introduction Contents Post-Test References Go To Presenter Info


Section 1
Section 2

- Objectives
- Prevention
- Education
- Assessing
- Skills Training
- Behavioral
- Couples
- Peer Groups
- Contraceptive
- Dual Method
- Alternative
- Male Condom
- Negotiating
- Reaching
- Correct Use
- Promotion
> Female
- Correct Use
- Resource
- Resource
- Summary

Section 3


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Section 2 - STD Prevention

Female Condom Provides Protection

  • Safe, no side effectsFemale condom
  • May protect external genitalia
  • Laboratory studies: some protection against STDs, including HIV
  • Human study: protects against trichomoniasis
  • Access to both male and female condoms may increase overall condom use

Source: Soper et al, 1993; Fontanet et al, 1998.
Slide 44

Another barrier method, the female condom, was developed in response to the need for female-initiated alternatives to male condoms.

Made of polyurethane, the female condom is safe to use and free of side effects. Like the male condom, it prevents sperm from coming in direct contact with a woman’s reproductive tract. When inserted, part of the female condom remains outside the vagina, providing additional protection to the labia and the base of the penis. This design may reduce the risk of transfer of infectious organisms from genital ulcers.

Laboratory studies have shown that female condoms protect against various STDs, including HIV. Human studies are limited, but one has found that consistent use of the female condom provides protection against trichomoniasis. Conclusive research on the female condom’s effectiveness in preventing STD transmission remains to be done.

Research has shown that overall condom use may increase when couples have access to both male and female condoms, rather than male condoms only.



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