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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2013 Jan;120(1):3-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2012.07.003. Epub 2012 Sep 6.

Intimate partner violence, abortion, and unintended pregnancy: results from the WHO Multi-country Study on Women's Health and Domestic Violence.

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  • 1World Health Organization, Department of Reproductive Health and Research, Geneva, Switzerland.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To explore how intimate partner violence (IPV) is associated with unintended pregnancy and abortion in primarily low- and middle-income countries.

METHODS:

Population data are presented from 17 518 ever-partnered women participating in the WHO Multi-country Study on Women's Health and Domestic Violence in 15 sites in 10 countries. Using multiple logistic regression analyses, associations between physical and/or sexual partner violence and abortion and unintended pregnancy were explored.

RESULTS:

Women with a history of IPV had significantly higher odds of unintended pregnancy in 8 of 14 sites and of abortion in 12 of 15 sites. Pooled estimates showed increased odds of unintended pregnancy (adjusted OR 1.69; 95% CI, 1.53-1.86) and abortion (adjusted OR 2.68; 95% CI, 2.34-3.06), after adjusting for confounding factors. Reducing IPV by 50% could potentially reduce unintended pregnancy by 2%-18% and abortion by 4.5%-40%, according to population-attributable risk estimates.

CONCLUSION:

IPV is a consistent and strong risk factor for unintended pregnancy and abortion across a variety of settings. Unintended pregnancy terminated through unsafe abortion can result in death or serious complications. Therefore, reducing IPV can significantly reduce risks to maternal and reproductive health.

Copyright © 2012 International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22959631
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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