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Actual Failure Rate

The average failure rate of a contraceptive. This takes into account not only actual failure of the device, but also human error and non-use.

Actual Failure Rate

The Actual Failure Rate of any type of Birth Control is based on two paradigms, each based on 100 users: Perfect Use is when the birth control is used as directed every, single time.  Actual Use is what happens in the real world.  Statistics on Actual Use vary, and the data from manufactures tends to show better figures than real use.  The Contraceptive Information Resource Compiled a number of studies of real women using birth control to reach the following data:

  FAILURE RATES

STD

USER

method of
birth control
perfect use actual use protection continuation rates
No Method 85 85    
Spermicides 18 29 + 42
Male Condoms 2 15 ++ 53
Female Condoms 5 21 ++ 49
Diaphragm 6 16 + 57
Cervical FemCap
w/o prior pregnancy
4 14 + 57
Sponge
w/o prior pregnancy
9 16 + 57
Sponge
w/ prior pregnancy
20 32 + 46
Ovulation Method 3 22   51
Sympto-Thermal 2.5 16   51
Standard Days Method 5 12    
Calendar Method 5 13-20   51
Lactation (LAM) 0.5 6    
Withdrawal 4 27 + 43
Oral Contraceptives 0.3 8   68
Ortho Evra Patch 0.3 8   68
Nuva Ring 0.3 8   68
Shot (Depo-Provera) 0.3 3   56
Shot (Lunelle) 0.05 3   59
IUD (ParaGard Copper) 0.8 0.6   80
IUD (Mirena) 0.1 0.1   80
Abstinence 0 0 ++++  


Statistics from http://www.contracept.org/ Contraceptive Information Resource