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Rhythm method: as good as the pill

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Natural family planning - or the rhythm method - is easy to use and as reliable as the Pill, according to a research team at a UK Birmingham hospital

Natural family planning - or the rhythm method - is easy to use and as reliable as the Pill, according to a research team at a UK Birmingham hospital.

R. E. J. Ryder, consultant physician at the department of endocrinology at Dudley Road Hospital in Birmingham, has drawn together a wealth of scientific evidence which shows that natural family planning is successful, even in Third World countries.

According to the study, World Health Organization research shows that '93 per cent of women everywhere can identify the symptoms, which distinguish adequately between the fertile and infertile phases of the menstrual cycle.' Where a couple is highly motivated to avoid pregnancy and where the standard of teaching of NFP is high, studies show that 'the failure rate was similar to that with the combined contraceptive pill' - which translates into a 98 per cent success rate.

'Natural family planning is cheap, effective, without side effects, and may be particularly acceptable to and efficacious among people in areas of poverty.' - BMJ,18 September 1993.


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