Study of adaptability and efficacy of menstrual cup in managing menstrual health and hygiene
Keywords:Adaptability, Effectiveness, Menstrual hygiene, Menstrual cup
Background: Menstrual cups have been available for decades, but their use is limited by bulky design and the need for multiple sizes. However, some benefits have been reported like improvement in managing health and hygiene during menstruation, better information on the average menstrual fluid discharged by women during menstruation and attainment of more knowledge bridging the lacuna in knowledge about the adaptability and efficacy of menstrual cup as a better alternative to conventional options. The study is aimed towards assessing the adaptability and the effectiveness of menstrual cup by naïve users who have been using sanitary pads/tampons/cloth as conventional menstrual sanitary protection.
Methods: The study was conducted at conducted Gujarat Medical Education and Research Society, Medical College and Hospital, Dharpur, Patan, Gujarat, India. Total 158 participants aged between ages of 20 to 50 years with regular menstrual cycle were enrolled in the study. Participants were provided menstrual cups to be used for three consecutive menstrual cycles. They were given detailed explanation/information about its usage. Feedback was obtained after every cycle for three cycles using a structured questionnaire.
Results: The cup was preferred for comfort, dryness, and less odor. Insertion was easy for 80% participants and 90% participants found removal easy. Problem of leakage was encountered in 3-6%. There were few side effects like rashes, dryness or infection.
Conclusions: These results demonstrate that this reusable vaginal device has no significant health risks and is acceptable to many women without the need for fitting or other medical services.
Houppert K. The curse: Confronting the last unmentionable taboo: Menstruation. Macmillan;1999.
Bharadwaj S, Patkar A. Menstrual hygiene and management in developing countries: Taking stock. Mumbai: Junction Social. 2004.
Ten VTA. Menstrual hygiene: A neglected condition for the achievement of several millennium development goals. Europe External Policy Advisors. 2007.
Delaney J, Lupton MJ, Toth E. The curse: A cultural history of menstruation. University of Illinois Press; 1988.
Nilesen AC. Sanitary Protection: Every Woman's Health Right. a survey undertaken. Reviewed and endorsed by community development organization Plan India, the survey was conducted in October 2010 and involved 1,033 women in the menstrual age and 151 gynaecologists from across India. 2011.
Puberty education and menstrual hygiene management - good policy and practice in health education - Booklet 9. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO);2014. Available at: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002267/226792e.pdf
Montgomery P, Ryus CR, Dolan CS, Dopson S, Scott LM. Sanitary pad interventions for girls' education in Ghana: a pilot study. PloS one. 2012;7(10):e48274.
Crofts T. Menstruation hygiene management for schoolgirls in low-income countries. Loughborough, UK, Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC). 2012.
Hockert SL. Catamenial Sack. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. 1867. Patent No. 70843.
van Eijk AM, Sivakami M, Thakkar MB, Bauman A, Laserson KF, Coates S et al. Menstrual hygiene management among adolescent girls in India: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ open. 2016;6(3):e010290.
Liswood R. Internal menstrual protection. Use of a safe and sanitary menstrual cup. Obstet Gynecol. 1959;13:539-43.
Oster EFT. Thornton RE. Menstruation and education in Nepal. National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper Series. 2009;14853.
Wysocki S. New options in menstrual protection. A guide for nurse practitioners. Adv Nurse Pract. 1997;5:51-4.
Stewart K. Powell M. Greer R. An alternative to conventional sanitary protection: Would women use a menstrual cup? J Obstet Gynecol. 2009;29:49-52.
van der Straten A, Sahin-Hodoglugil N, Mtetwa S. Feasibility and acceptability of cervical barriers among vulnerable youth: A pilot study in Zimbabwe. 4th IAS Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment, and Prevention; Sydney, Australia. 2007.
Karnaky K. Internal menstrual protection with the rubber menstrual cup. Obstet Gynecol. 1962;19:688-91.
United States Pharmacopoeia. Classification of plastics (Class VI) testing, USP XXII. 1990:1497-500.
Averbach S, Sahin-Hodoglugil N, Musara P. Chipato T. van der Straten A. Duet® for menstrual protection: A feasibility study in Zimbabwe. Contraception. 2009;79:463-8.
North BB, Oldham MJ. Preclinical, clinical, and over-the-counter postmarketing experience with a new vaginal cup: menstrual collection. J Women's Health. 2011;20(2):303-11.