Background Several of the health benefits and risks associated with the combined oral contraceptive pill (COCP) are particularly relevant to women at risk of hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancer. Methods Eighty-three past female patients of an Australian hereditary cancer clinic aged 18-50 years completed a self-report questionnaire to assess their contraceptive practices, knowledge and information needs (44% response rate). Results Ninety-two percent of participants had previously used the COCP, with a mean knowledge score of 3.63 out of 8. Nearly 40% reported that their family history of cancer was one reason they discontinued/avoided using the COCP. Women reported receiving insufficient COCP information and preferred a targeted information leaflet to answer their questions. Conclusions Although recall bias may have affected some women, there is a clear need to improve the consistency of information delivered to women at risk of hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancer, to ensure informed contraceptive choices are made.
- hereditary breast ovarian cancer
- information needs