Menstrual Disorders in Rural Igbo Women of Ebonyi State, South East Nigeria
Background: Rural Igbo women frequently perceive disorders of menstruation in the context of their inability to achieve pregnancy, and may otherwise not volunteer information on such abnormalities in the gynaecological clinic. This study determined the prevalence and pattern of menstrual disorders in rural Igbo women of Ebonyi State, South East Nigeria. Materials and Methods: Data was collected from 1500 women in randomly selected communities in rural Ebonyi State by trained research assistants using pre tested questionnaires in a cross sectional study that spanned three months, March to May 2005. Information obtained related to their socio demographic variables, menstrual characteristics and disorders. Data obtained was analyzed using the epi info statistical programme. Results: One thousand, four hundred and sixty-three questionnaires were analyzed. The mean cycle length and mean menstrual flow duration in our study population were 29.6 days and 4.4 days respectively. Eight hundred and twenty-nine (56.7%) of the respondents had one or a combination of menstrual disorders. Dysmenorrhoea occurred in 51.3% of the women and was the commonest menstrual disorder noted. Intermenstrual bleeding, found in forty-five (3.1%) respondents was the least common. Short cycle length (<21 days}, long cycle length (>35 days), menstrual flow duration lasting more than 7 days and heavy menstrual loss were significantly more prevalent among the adolescents than other age groups. Conclusion: Menstrual complaints which are important indices of women's well being are commonly encountered in Igbo women of Southeast Nigeria, and may indicate underlying gynaecological pathology.
Keywords: disorders, menstrual, menorrhagia, Igbo, health
Journal of College of Medicine Vol. 12 (2) 2007: pp. 61-66