Journal Article

Increasing access to safe menstrual regulation services in Bangladesh by offering medical menstrual regulation

In spite of wide availability of menstrual regulation services, women often resort to a variety of medicines for inducing abortion. The Bangladeshi Government is now supporting attempts to investigate the introduction of medical menstrual regulation in the public sector. This study examined the acceptability of medical menstrual regulation in public sector urban-based clinics, public sector rural-based clinics and urban-based clinics run by Marie Stopes, a non-governmental organization. Of the 2,976 women who attended for menstrual regulation services during the eight-month study period, 68% attended urban Maternal and Child Welfare Centres and the Marie Stopes clinics, while 32% went to the rural public facilities of the Union Health and Family Welfare Centre. Women were offered both medical and manual vacuum aspiration methods of menstrual regulation; 1,875 (63%) chose the medical method and 1,101 (37%) chose manual vacuum aspiration. Around 7.1% of women at Maternal and Child Welfare centres and 11.9% at the Marie Stopes clinics knew about medical menstrual regulation before taking the service, compared to a much higher proportion (43%) at the rural facilities. Overall 61.4% of women who used medical menstrual regulation found the method satisfactory, and 34.2% were very satisfied. Of the 3.9% of women who were not satisfied, most received services from rural facilities.