Experience of intimate partner violence as a predictor of sexually transmitted infections among married women in Nigeria
Background: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is an important public health issue that is associated with adverse sexual and reproductive health outcomes including sexually transmitted infections (STIs). STIs have recently gained more recognition worldwide because they increase the risk forHIV infection. However, there is dearth of information on the association between IPV and STIs particularly among married women in Nigeria.
Objective: To determine the association between IPV and STIs among married women in Nigeria.
Method: This was a secondary data analysis of the 2008 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) dataset. A total of 18,402 married women aged between 15 and 49 years were included. Questions about intimate partner violence were adapted from the Conflict Tactic Scale (CTS). Multiple logistic regression models were used to determine relationship between IPV and self-reported STIs.
Results: The prevalence of IPV among married women in Nigeria was 29.3%. Majority of the women experienced emotional violence (22.1%), 17.3% of the women experienced physical violence while the least experienced form of violence was sexual IPV (4.4%). Majority (60.1%) of the women experienced just one type of IPV, 30.0% two types, 9.9% all three types. The prevalence of selfreported sexually transmitted infections was 7.2%. Logistic regression demonstrated that after controlling for other covariates, women who experienced any form of IPV were found to be more likely to report STI than women who did not [OR 1.357 (95% CI 1.188-1.551)]. In addition, experience of physical and sexual IPV was significantly associated with history of STIs [OR 1.699 (95% CI 1.420-2.034); OR 1.414 (95% CI 1.085-1.843) respectively]. Experiencing two or more types of IPV was significantly associated with history of STIs [OR 1.759 (95% CI 1.446-2.139); OR 2.193 (95% CI 1.636-2.941) respectively].
Conclusion: There is a need to incorporate IPV screening and services in STI clinics. Also, it is important to screen for STIs among women who present with IPV particularly those with multiple types of violence.
Keywords: Intimate Partner Violence (IPV), Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs), married women, Nigeria