View this email in your browser

  Apply now for an ESC Grant

Project: This grant may be used to support an individual, group, institute or organisation with a project that has a scientific basis with described, relevant outcome(s) and is related to the aims of the ESC. A maximum of 10,000 euros per project application can be requested.
The ESC will provide funding to support a regional or local educational course or meeting within Europe related to the aims of the ESC. A maximum of 5,000 euros per course application can be requested.
More information
White paper on Contraception access in Europe

White Paper on contraception access in Europe, published by the European Parliamentary Forum on Population and Development (EPF), now available. This document, together with the  2017’s Council of Europe report on Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Europe, are two essential references and tools for those working on advancing access to contraception in Europe. 
More information
Paper comment: Involve men in the contraceptive decision
A clear challenge to ESC members is to understand the drivers to acceptability of contraceptives in different populations. A paper from the north Africa region on continuation rates for subdermal implants, which are the most effective LARCs shows a low 1st year discontinuation in a population traditionally perceived as not tolerant of irregular bleeding/amenorrhea. Unjustified physicians advice is identified as a main reason for discontinuation. This is an education challenge for all of us. Husbands' educational level is associated with lower discontinuation rates. I suggest MENTOO# AS a banner for the ESC Dublin Congress to encourage all of us to involve men in the contraceptive decision. Lastly expert and sufficient pre-insertion counselling is an obvious intervention to increase tolerability. Knowledge is power.
Ali Kubba, ESC Vice-President
Full paper
Paper comment: Plasma concentrations of etonogestrel in obese women using oral desogestrel before and after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery (RYGB): a pharmacokinetic study
Following bariatric surgery, there are concern about the efficacy of hormonal contraceptives. This study studied pharmacokinetics of the active derivative of desogestrel, etonogestrel, before and 12±2 and 52±2 weeks after surgery. The surgery was a Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) which is different from Sleeve gastrectomy. In RYGB, the food intake is delivered directly into the jejunum. Most of the stomach and the duodenum are bypassed. It is however a less important bypass than ileojejunal bypass which has been associated with decreased levels of norethisterone and levonorgestrel. Etonogestrel is thought to be absorbed principally in the gastrotintestinal part, but an in vitro study gave arguments for a metabolism all over the intestine and the colon as discussed by the authors. In this study, 14 women were included and only 9 completed the study. Their median age was 35 years (range:22-41), their mean BMI before surgery was 40.5±4.4  and at 1 year, 29±4.8 .
Results: the mean plasma concentration time curves were unaffected and the values were similar before and on both occasions of samples (3 months and 1 year) after RYGB: 24h, Cmax, Tmax, C24h, terminal half-lives (t½), or apparent oral clearances of etonogestrel were not significantly altered after RYGB, except for a significantly higher mean Cmax 12 months after RYGB compared to preoperatively (0,817 ng/ml vs 0,590 ng/ml, p=0,024). However looking at the individual values, only 4 patients had a Cmax over their initial values.
Conclusions: the main limitation of this study is the relative low number of women. But the methodology included a large number of samples (at 0, 0.5, 1, 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12 and 24 hours after ingesting one dose of desogestrel 75 μg ). Which could explain the rate of drop out.It is the only study of pharmacokinetics after a RYGB. It has to be confirmed in a larger group of patients and at the level of clinical contraceptive efficacy but is reassuring in terms of efficacy of low dose progestin contraception in this group of women in whom pregnancy has to be delayed after the surgery for one year at least.
Plasma concentrations of etonogestrel in obese women using oral desogestrel before and after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery (RYGB): a pharmacokinetic study. Ginstman C et al BJOG. 2018 Oct 22.
Prof. A. Gompel, Paris Descartes University, Paris

   New session in the Teaching and Training Tool

Check out the new session in the Teaching and Training Tool (TTT) and update your knowledge on "Contraception after first and second trimester abortion".
   Consensus statement: Migraine
MigraineEffect of exogenous estrogens and progestogens on the course of migraine during reproductive age: a consensus statement by the European Headache Federation (EHF) and the European Society of Contraception and Reproductive Health (ESCRH)
   Survey on the EC Wheel
The Emergency Contraception Wheel (available in English and French) is a counselling tool created in 2016 by the European Consortium for Emergency Contraception (ECEC), with support of the European Society of Contraception. It summarizes up-to-date and evidence-based technical information about three emergency contraception (EC) methods: levenorgestrel EC pills, ulipritsal acetate EC pills and the Cu-IUD. This tool was conceived to help strengthen post-coital contraceptive counselling, and promote informed choice of EC methods. 
If you have used the EC Wheel (either the printed or the on-line versions), ECEC would like to hear your comments and feedback. Follow the link to complete the short survey. Thank you for your time and cooperation. 

We have regular polls on our homepage. The latest is about whether to host an interactive, networking forum on the website
Vote now
   Grant winners 2018
More information

   Mission statement - 16th ESC Congress, Dublin, 2020

The theme of the 16th ESC Congress in Dublin in 2020 is “Let the conversation begin” Cultural and ethnic diversity in a changing world. The ESC, over time, has broadened its membership and geographic spread to reflect the demographics of those who provide and those who avail of our services.
This  Congress is an innovative approach to integrating the science and research of reproductive health care with the cultural  and ethical mores of a broad based service. The Congress will facilitate and encourage debate on a wide range of subjects from Classical contraceptive topics to Gender fluidity.
We welcome, indeed, encourage our membership and guests to join us in Dublin for an exciting and lively Congress!
Mary Short, Congress & ESC President

   WHO Survery

WHO Global survey to inform values and preferences on self-care interventions for sexual and reproductive health. Examples: self-injection of contraceptives; self-testing for sexually transmitted infections (STIs); self-management of abortion; accessing information on SRHR on the internet.

IMAP statement on sexual and reproductive health services in humanitarian settings
Every day, over 500 women and girls living in emergency settings lose their lives from preventable causes related to reproductive health. Poverty, geography and gender inequality ensure that when a crisis strikes, women and girls are disproportionately disadvantaged and less able to cope and respond to the threats and risks that they face. The timely provision of SRH services including the MISP can prevent death, disease, and disability related to unintended pregnancy, obstetric complications, sexual and other forms of gender‑based violence, HIV infection, and a range of reproductive disorders.
More information
Online platform pill provision
Women, in the six European countries where it is legal to purchase prescription medications through online pharmacies are increasingly turning to the internet for their contraceptive supplies.  Until recently this has been a private service but new developments in the United Kingdom mean that online contraceptives are starting to be available through the National Health Service. The online sexual health service SH:24 ( offers free online information on contraception, a discussion forum where people can ask questions about contraception and free contraceptive pills delivered home after an online risk assessment and self-reported biometric measurements (in areas where this service is commissioned by the NHS). Early evaluation of this service suggests that contraceptive continuation rates are significantly higher among those accessing their pills online in comparison to those accessing them from face-to-face services and that levels of knowledge about the pill are similar. This evaluation is part of an ongoing programme of research on online contraceptive services. For more information on this research programme, please contact Dr. Paula Baraitser.
   26 September we celebrated World Contraception Day
This annual event on 26th September once again produced many and varied events around the world. Thank you to all those who told us what was happening where you are. We joined with our partner organisations using social media to publicise these and to continue to raise awareness of the important issues.
More information


ESC organised a successful session at the 13th FIAPAC Conference held in Nantes, France, in September. It was chaired by Sam Rowlands, Deputy Coordinator of the Expert Group on Abortion and Gabriele Halder, Board Member of FIAPAC. Kai Haldre presented on repeated pregnancies in adolescents, drawing on her long experience working in comprehensive relationships and sex education and youth services in Estonia. Roberto Lertxundi spoke about the evidence on the timing of insertion of intrauterine contraception after abortion. Teresa Bombas stood in at the last moment for Gabriele Merki, who was indisposed, and presented on contraceptive use after cancer. This session was well-received and contributed to the success of this Conference.

  • An 80% decrease in teenage fertility rates in Estonia over 20 years, showing the outstanding success of their youth programme
  • The advantages of early compared to delayed IUC insertion after medical abortion
  • Many women of reproductive age with cancer need contraceptive advice around the time of their diagnosis but some do not receive it.
Sam Rowlands, UK

  ESC at Figo

FIGO (International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) organized it’s 22nd World Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Rio De Janeiro, Brasil in October 14-19, 2018. ESC (European Society of Contraception and Reproductive Health) organized session ’Contraception in Europe: education, myths and challenges’ on Thursday the October 18th. The speakers and their titles were:

  • Johannes Bitzer (Switzerland): ’ESC educational activities in Europe '
  • Gabriele Merki (Switzerland): 'The pill is not dangerous: myths vs. facts'
  • Oskari Heikinheimo (Finland): ’ When to start contraception after medical abortion’

The session was attended by health care provides with keen interest in contraception and reproductive health. Similarly as at the previous ESC-session at the FIGO congress, the discussion after each talk was lively. ESC at FIGO meetings has become an important venue for ESC to promote the European models of contraception and reproductive health care to global audience. 
Oskari Heikinheimo, Finland

Session impressions and Gabriele Merki represented ESC at the FIGO 'Stop Violence Against Women Walk'.


ESC Events

Copyright © 2018 *European Society of Contraception and Reproductive Health*, All rights reserved

Contact: Tel. +32 2 582 08 52/

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can unsubscribe from this list.