A birth control app has been reported to Swedish authorities after 37 women using it had an unwanted pregnancy.
Natural Cycles, which is available on Google Play and the App Store, works by combining body temperature readings and technology to determine when a woman is ovulating.
That means women using it are required to measure and record their body temperature with a basal thermometer every day. The app uses an algorithm to let them if they’re fertile, essentially advising them if they should or shouldn’t have unprotected sex.
It bills itself as a contraceptive app and says that it’s 93 percent effective. It’s also a certified method of birth control in the European Union.
But Södersjukhuset, a Stockholm hospital, filed a report after discovering that 37 patients seeking abortions between September and December 2017 used Natural Cycles as a form of birth control. An investigation by Sweden’s Medical Products Agency is underway.
It should however be noted that 93 percent effectiveness means for every 100 women, seven of them will get pregnant. And since the app has users numbering in the thousands, the 37 cases may not be all too surprising.
“As our user base increases, so will the number of unplanned pregnancies coming from Natural Cycles users. This is an arithmetic truth applicable to all contraceptive methods,” said the company in an official statement.
Want to know the effectiveness of other popular forms of birth control? The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has some answers — and FYI the National University Hospital Women’s Centre adheres to this information. Scroll the gallery to find out more.
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