PMID: 38147Aug 1, 1979

Human cervical mucus. V. Oral contraceptives and mucus rheologic properties

Fertility and Sterility
D P WolfM Litt


Mucus viscoelasticity on individual samples obtained from patients using combination oral contraceptives was quantitated by microrheometry. These results, in conjunction with mucus chemical characterization, indicate that combination oral contraceptive use eliminates the cyclic variations in mucus chemical, physicochemical, and rheologic properties associated with the ovulatory menstrual cycle. A correlation was demonstrated between the mucus elastic modulus and mucus nondialyzable dry weight, and the mucins produced during oral contraceptive therapy were shown to be similar to those recovered from ovulatory donors. Differences in mucus properties were noted when donors using estrogenic contraceptives were contrasted with those using androgenic contraceptives. On the basis of established relationships between sperm penetrability and mucus solids content, it was concluded that the use of contraceptives, as examined in this study, provided a secondary degree of fertility control at the cervical level.

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