Withdrawal Method

What is coitus interruptus?
Also known as the withdrawal method, this involves withdrawing the penis before ejaculation, therefore preventing sperm from entering the vagina. It has no protective value from STIs and is not very effective for preventing pregnancy, as pre-ejaculation fluid may contain sperm.

Some couples find it very difficult and frustrating to make use of this method, as it creates some tension and anxiety as to whether the man would manage to withdraw in time. Some couples find that it disrupts their sexual pleasure. However, several couples find that this is their preferred method of contraception because it has no side-effects and is free.

Advantages and Disadvantages:

  • Easily available
  • Does not affect breastfeeding
  • Requires no consultations with health professionals
  • Acceptable to certain religions
  • No financial cost
  • Under the control of the couple


  • Low efficacy
  • No protection against HIV and other Sexually Transmitted Infections
  • May inhibit enjoyment and highly interrupts sexual intercourse
  • May lead to sexual dysfunction

Who cannot make use of coitus interruptus?

Men experiencing premature ejaculation