Internet counseling on contraception by the Study Group for Contraception in Korea

Internet counseling on contraception by the Study Group for Contraception

in Korea

I.S. Lee (1), D.S. Choi (2), K.J. Hwang (3), H. W. Jung (4), C.S. Ahn (5), S.

K. Hong (6), H. K. Lee (7), Y. H. Hwang (8)

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Soonchunhyang University (1),

Sungkeunkwan University (2), Ajou University (3), Ehwa University (4), Ahn

Hospital (5), Chungdam Marie Hospital (6), Inje University (7), Schering Korea

(8), Seoul, Korea

Objective: To introduce 4 years of data collected from an internet

website on contraception counseling by obstetricians of the Study Group for


Methods: The cumulated data, including number of visitors, page views,

utilization of contraception contents, on-line counseling and its contents from

the internet home page,, owned and operated by the Study Group

for Contraception in Korea from March 1999 to December 2002, was analyzed.

Results: The number of visitors to the homepage grew tremendously from

129,769 in 1999 to 1,537,751 in 2002. Also, the number of page views increased

from 1,556,877 in 1999 to 9,957,462 in 2002. The most frequently visited topic

was general information on contraception; whereas the second most frequently

visited was the on-line counseling site. The number of counseling requests

ranged from 300 to 700 each month. The three most frequently asked questions

were related to oral contraceptives, emergency contraception, and pregnancy

probability, respectively. The questions in relation to oral contraceptives

increased annually from 9.8% in 1999 to 33.3% in 2002; it could show the

changing trend of oral contraceptive use. Questions in relation to oral

contraceptives were on methods of administration and dosage (25%), side effects

(23%), indications (11%), contraindications (8%), non-contraceptive use (9%),

missed doses (8%), and other (6%).

Conclusion: This study indicates that the investigated website has

been providing appropriate knowledge and information on contraception and has

proven itself to be an effective communication tool to further enhance

understanding of contraception in Korea via its user-friendly approach. However,

the on-line website limits certain communication, such as improper delivery of

information by unauthorized on-line users. We also need to make it even more

user-friendly and attractive to young people in their teens and twenties. These

kind of people especially do not frequent hospitals, do need this kind of

information and do surf the net all the time. Hence, this kind of counseling

website has much potential.

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