An alternative in menses management
a cross-sectional study about medical students knowledge of the menstrual cup
Keywords:menstrual cup, surveys and questionnaires, menstruation, menses management, students, medical
Introduction: The menstrual cup (MC) is a menses management alternative, being little known. This study objective was to discover if Lisbon School of Medicine (FMUL) medical students know the MC.
Objective: The main objective of this study was to verify whether the medical students of the Faculty of Medicine of Lisbon (FMUL) know the MC well.
Methods: In the study first phase, a bibliographic review was made and a questionnaire was structured and tested in a pilot population. The second phase started after the Ethics Committee approval and consisted on giving the questionnaire to all FMUL medical students.
Results: Of the 2169 students who received the questionnaire, there were obtained 970 responses. The majority of participants knew of the MC (93.8%), mainly from social networks, friends and social media and less frequently from family, lessons, workshops/conferences and doctor. Most of them were familiar with MC functions, although there were misconceptions. Of the 755 women, 108 already used the MC, being more recently used. Most women (39.6%) considered its use, being the most susceptible the ones with average-heavy menstrual flow and those who used tampons.
Conclusion: Although FMUL medical students heard about the MC, there is a lack of knowledge of all its potentialities. So, it is required to provide information about it in academic/scientific events and healthcare-centers. Finally, there should be a bigger investment in the medical curriculum regarding menses management.
Averbach, S., Sahin-Hodoglugil, N., Musara, P., Chipato, T., & Straten, A. van der. (2009). Duet for menstrual protection: a feasibility study in Zimbabwe. Contraception, 79(6), 463–468. DOI: 10.1016/j.contraception.2008.12.002.
Beksinska, M. E., Smit, J., Greener, R., Todd, C. S., Lee, M-L. T., Maphumulo, V., & Hoffmann, V. (2015). Acceptability and Performance of the Menstrual Cup in South Africa: A Randomized Crossover Trial Comparing the Menstrual Cup to Tampons or Sanitary Pads. Journal of Women’s Health, 24(2), 151–158. DOI: 10.1089/jwh.2014.5021
Coast, E., Lattof, S. R., & Strong, J. (2019). Puberty and menstruation knowledge among young adolescents in low- and middle-income countries: a scoping review. International Journal of Public Health, 64(2), 293–304. DOI: 10.1007/s00038-019-01209-0.
Day, S. (2012). A retained menstrual cup. International Journal of STD and AIDS, 23,367–368. DOI: 10.1258/ijsa.2011.011277
Eijk, A. M. Van, Zulaika, G., Lenchner, M., Mason, L., Sivakami, M., Nyothach, E.,...Phillips-Howard, P. A. (2019). Menstrual cup use, leakage, acceptability, safety, and availability: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The Lancet Public Health, 4(8), e208-15. DOI: 10.1016/S2468-2667(19)30111-2.
Hait, A., & Powers, S. E. (2019). The value of reusable feminine hygiene products evaluated by comparative environmental life cycle assessment. Resources, Conservation & Recycling, 150, 1–10. DOI: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2019.104422.
Hennegan, J., & Montgomery, P. (2016). Do Menstrual Hygiene Management Interventions Improve Education and Psychosocial Outcomes for Women and Girls in Low and Middle Income Countries? A Systematic Review. Plos One, 49, 1–21. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0146985
Howard, C., Rose, C. L., Trouton, K., Stamm, H., Marentette, D., Kirkpatrick, N.,…Paget, J. (2011). FLOW (finding lasting options for women): multicentre randomized controlled trial comparing tampons with menstrual cups. Canadian Family Physician, 57, e208–e215.
Huang, P-T., & Huang, J-H. (2019). Menstrual Cup Use Intention and the Moderating Effects of Sexual Orientation and Gender Characteristic Among Female University Students in Taiwan: A Theory ‑ Driven Exploration. Archives of Sexual Behavior, (0123456789), 1–12. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-019-1412-y.
Jaumdally, S. Z., Masson, L., Jones, H. E., Dabee, S., Hoover, D. R., Gamieldien, H.,...Passmore, J-A. S. (2018). Lower genital tract cytokine profiles in South African women living with HIV: influence of mucosal sampling. Scientific Reports, (August, :1–12. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-30663-8
Mitchell, M. A., Bisch, S., Arntfield, S., & Hosseini-Moghaddam, S. M. (2015). A confirmed case of toxic shock syndrome associated with the use of a menstrual cup. Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology, 26(4), 218–221. DOI: 10.1155/2015/560959.
North, B. B., & Oldham, M. J. (2011). Preclinical, Clinical, and Over-the-Counter Postmarketing Experience with a New Vaginal Cup: Menstrual Collection. Journal of Women’s Health, 20(2), 303–311. DOI: 10.1089=jwh.2009.1929
Nunes-Carneiro, D., Couto, T., & Cavadas, V. (2018). Is the menstrual cup harmless? A case report of an unusual cause of renal colic. International Journal of Surgery Case Reports, 46, 28–30. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijscr.2018.04.002.
Oster, E., & Thornton, R. (2012). Determinants of technology adoption: peer effects in menstrual cup take-up. Journal of the European Economic Association, 0(0), 1–31. DOI: 10.1111/j.1542-4774.2012.01090.x
Phillips-Howard, P. A., Otieno, G., Burmen, B., Otieno, F., Odongo, F., Odour, C.,...Laserson, K. F. (2015). Menstrual Needs and Associations with Sexual and Reproductive Risks in Rural Kenyan Females: A Cross-Sectional Behavioral Survey Linked. Journal of Women’s Health, 24(10), 801–811. DOI: 10.1089/jwh.2014.5031
Phillips-Howard, P.A., Nyothach, E., Kuile, F. O. Ter, Omoto, J., Wang, D., Zah, C.,...Laserson, K. F. (2016). Menstrual cups and sanitary pads to reduce school attrition, and sexually transmitted and reproductive tract infections: a cluster randomised controlled feasibility study in rural Western Kenya. BMJ, 1–11. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2016-013229
Russell, K. W., Robinson, R. E., Mone, M. C., & Scaife, C. L. (2016). Enterovaginal or Vesicovaginal Fistula Control Using a Silicone Cup. Obstetrics & Gynecology, 128(6), 1365–1368. DOI: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000001745
Schnyer, A. N., Jensen, J. T., Edelman, A., & Han, L. (2019). Do menstrual cups increase risk of IUD expulsion? A survey of self-reported IUD and menstrual hygiene product use in the United States. The European Journal of Contraception & Reproductive Health Care, 0(0), 1–5. DOI: 10.1080/13625187.2019.1643836.
Seale, R., Powers, L., Guiahi, M., & Coleman-Minahan, K. (2019). Unintentional IUD expulsion with concomitant menstrual cup use: a case series. Contraception, 100(1), 85–87. DOI: 10.1016/j.contraception.2019.03.047.
Stewart, K., Powell, M., & Greer, R. (2009). An alternative to conventional sanitary protection: Would women use a menstrual cup? Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 29, 49–52. DOI: 10.1080/01443610802628841
Stewart, K., Greer, R., & Powell, M. (2010). Women’s experience of using the Mooncup. Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 30, 285–287. DOI: 10.3109/01443610903572117
Stolz, A., Meuwly, J-Y., Roussel, A., & Paulin, E. N. (2019). An improperly positioned menstrual cup complicated by hydronephrosis: A case report. Case Reports in Women’s Health, 22, 1–3. DOI: 10.1016/j.crwh.2019.e00108.
Wall, L. L., Belay, S., Bayray, A., Salih, S., Gabrehiwot, M. (2016). A community-based study of menstrual beliefs in Tigray, Ethiopia. International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, 135, 310–313. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2016.05.015.
Wiebe, E. R., & Trouton, K. J. (2012). Does using tampons or menstrual cups increase early IUD expulsion rates? Contraception, 86(2), 119–121. DOI: 10.1016/j.contraception.2011.12.002.
Zulaika, G., Kwaro, D., Nyothach, E., Wang, D., Zielinski-Gutierrez, E., Mason, L.,...Phillips-Howard, P. A. (2019). Menstrual cups and cash transfer to reduce sexual and reproductive harm and school dropout in adolescent schoolgirls: study protocol of a cluster-randomised controlled trial in western Kenya. BMC Public Health, 1–14. DOI: 10.1186/s12889-019-7594-3.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who submit proposals for this journal agree to the following terms:
a) Articles are published under the License Creative Commons, in full open-access, without any cost or fees of any kind to the author or the reader;
b) The authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication, allowing the free sharing of work, provided it is correctly attributed the authorship and initial publication in this journal;
c) The authors are permitted to take on additional contracts separately for non-exclusive distribution of the version of the work published in this journal (eg, post it to an institutional repository or as a book), with an acknowledgment of its initial publication in this journal;
d) Authors are permitted and encouraged to publish and distribute their work online (eg, in institutional repositories or on their website) as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as increase the impact and citation of published work
Documents required for submission