Barrier contraceptives

For some women, traditional barrier contraception is still their preferred approach

Writing in a 2012 BMJ Group blog, Tracey Koehlmoos asked the question: "Whatever happened to the diaphragm?"1

As a widow not in a sexual relationship at the time, she had done her research and decided the diaphragm was the contraceptive for her.

That decision was the easy part; actually getting one proved much more difficult. Koehlmoos was working in Indonesia as — wait for it — a program head for health and family planning systems for an international organisation.

She observed in the blog that her clinicians all attempted to steer her towards more effective methods, disregarding some of the advantages of the diaphragm that she felt made the device the most suitable option for her. One even laughed at her for wanting the birth control of the "last millennium".

Perhaps it's time to take a new look at an old favourite by re-examining female barrier contraception in