Awareness and practice of emergency contraception at a private university in Nigeria

Jacob Olumuyiwa Awoleke, Abiodun Idowu Adanikin, Adeola Awoleke, Moyinoluwa Odanye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
40 Downloads (Pure)


Background: The pursuit of formal education now causes many people in developing countries to marry later in life, thereby leading to increased premarital sex and unintended pregnancies. Efforts have been made to characterize awareness and use of emergency contraception (EC) among undergraduate students in public universities in Nigeria; however, it is not known if students in private tertiary institutions adopt different practices or if having an affluent family background plays a role. This pilot study therefore aimed to assess the awareness and use of EC among students at a private Nigerian university toward assisting education planners in developing strategies in improving students' reproductive well-being. Results: Out of 94 female students, 42 (44.7%) had sexual experience, but only 32 (34.0%) were currently sexually active. Six students (6.4%) had had unwanted pregnancies, of which all but one were terminated. Fifty-seven respondents (60.6%) were aware of EC, though only 10 (10.6%) ever practiced it. The greatest source of EC information was from health workers and peers; the lowest source was family or relatives. Most respondents desired orientation and availability of EC on campus. EC awareness among the students was predicted by upper social class background (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 2.73; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.06-7.45) and upbringing in the Federal Capital Territory (adjusted OR, 4.45; 95% CI, 1.56-14.22). Conclusions: Though awareness of EC was higher among the private university students in this study than at most public universities, there was no difference in EC usage. A high pregnancy termination rate was observed; dilatation and curettage were mainly adopted. In Nigeria, youth-friendly reproductive health information and access should not be limited to government-owned tertiary institutions but also extended to private ones.

Original languageEnglish
Article number215
Number of pages6
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium,
provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.


  • Africa
  • Emergency contraception
  • Private university
  • Student
  • Undergraduate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Awareness and practice of emergency contraception at a private university in Nigeria'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this