Although some people may think it relying on early withdrawal (aka coitus interruptus) as a means of birth control went out of fashion after the 1950’s, a 2006-2008 study by Dr. Annie Dude, a resident in obstetrics and gynecology at Duke University found that the practice is still a lot more common than previously thought.
"We found that people tend to use the withdrawal method when they're not really planning ahead. The problem is it just doesn’t work as well as other birth control methods.” In fact, Dude found that those who rely on the practice tend to have more pregnancies than other woman according to her two-year research project involving 2,220 sexually active females 15-24 years old.
The participants were divided into two groups; those who had used withdrawal in at least one month of the study period, and women who only used other forms of birth control including IUDs, pills, and under the skin implants, etc.
According to Dr. Dude’s report (published in Obstetrics and Gynecology) “just over 25% of the women in the study said they had become pregnant during the prior 22 months, with 59% stating it was accidental.”
One of the biggest problems with relying on withdrawal is that “it requires good timing and communication between partners,” cautioned Dude. However, even when it is done “properly” experts say that failure tend to be as high as 18%-24%. In addition, women who use the method instead of insisting their partners use condoms put themselves as greater risk of contracting STDs, as well as HIV.