Is the oral contraceptive pill associated with fracture in later life? New evidence from the Royal College of General Practitioners Oral Contraception Study

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Several studies, including an earlier analysis from the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) Oral Contraception Study, have suggested that ever users of oral contraceptives have an increased risk of fracture when compared with never users. In this paper, we examined a subset of women in the RCGP study living in Scotland to determine whether this risk has persisted.

Study Design
A nested case-control study was carried out using data collected prospectively for the RCGP Oral Contraception Study. Cases were women with a first ever diagnosis of fracture (n=651), age-matched to two controls (n=1302). Adjustments were made for smoking, social class and parity.

There was not a significant association between ever use of oral contraception and fracture (adjusted odds ratio 1.05, 95% confidence interval 0.86–1.29), compared with never users. Neither were significant associations found between fracture and smoking, social class and parity. The findings did not vary materially with age or type of fracture.

Ever use of oral contraception was not associated with fracture in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-47
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Early online date21 Jan 2011
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2011



  • oral contraceptive pill
  • fracture
  • risk
  • bone mineral density
  • osteoporosis

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