Why do married women procure abortion? Experiences from Ile-Ife, south western Nigeria
Background: In Nigeria, about 1.25million induced abortions occur annually and the country accounts for one-fifth of abor- tion-related deaths globally.
Objectives: The study aimed to assess the determinants of induced abortion among married women.
Methods: A mixed methods study was conducted in Ile-Ife, Nigeria. The quantitative component employed a cross-sectional study design while the qualitative aspect comprised focus group discussions. Information on contraceptives use, unintended pregnancy and induced abortion were obtained from 402 married women (with at least one child) aged 18-49 years using a semi-structured questionnaire. Four focus group discussion sessions were conducted among women of reproductive age.
Results: Majority (67.2%) of respondents had ever used a contraceptive method. However, 34.3% of the women have had un- intended pregnancies and 14.2% had induced abortion. FGD findings revealed that non-use of contraceptives and contraceptive failure were major reasons for unintended pregnancies and induced abortion. The significant predictors of induced abortion were non-use of contraceptives, age≥ 40 years and multiparity.
Conclusion: Induced abortion still occur among married women particularly those not using contraceptives, aged ≥40 years and those with high parity. More emphasis should be placed on making contraceptives more accessible to married women.
Keywords: Induced abortion; unwanted pregancies; married women; Nigeria.
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