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The magnitude of episiotomy among women who gave birth in Ethiopia: Systematic review and meta-analysis

Natnael Atnafu Gebeyehu
Kelemu Abebe Gelaw
Getachew Asmare Adela
Biresaw Wasihun Alemu
Birhanu Wondimeneh Demisie
Eyasu Alem Lake


Episiotomy is one of the most common obstetric procedures done by health providers putting the client at high risk of developing complications and lacerations. These days, episiotomy has been done at an alarming rate in Ethiopia as compared to the slant set by World Health Organization. Be that as it may, there is a need for nationally representative data. This study aimed to determine the pooled prevalence of episiotomy practice among women who gave birth at public health institutions in Ethiopia. We accessed PubMed, Web of Science, Google Scholar, EMBASE, and manual search was used to retrieve articles. The extractions of the data were done by using Microsoft Excel and analyzed by STATA version 11 statistical software. The publication bias was checked by funnel plot visually and Egger's test and Begg’s test, with P < 0.05 considered indicating potential publication bias. I2 was used to check the presence of heterogeneity of the studies. Overall estimated analysis was done. Subgroup analysis was done by region. We carried out a leave-one-out sensitivity analysis. The Joanna Briggs Institute risk of bias assessment tool was used. Out of 254 articles retrieved, 9 studies met the eligibility criteria and are thus included in this study. The overall episiotomy practice in Ethiopia was 45.01% (95% CI: 36.288, 53.741). Based on the sub-group analysis, prevalence of episiotomy practice was 49.32% (95%CI: 12.67, 85.97), 46.92% (95%CI: 29.47, 64.37), 44.23% (95%CI: 37.77, 50.99) and 38.29 (95%CI: 32.38, 44.20) among South region, Addis Ababa, Amhara region and Tigray region respectively. The findings revealed that the prevalence of episiotomy practice in Ethiopia was high (45.01%). Therefore, it is better to have periodic training for birth attendants on the indication of episiotomy and the appropriate use of guidelines to reduce the rate of episiotomy.

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eISSN: 1118-4841