Nigerian Journal of Clinical Practice

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Knowledge and perception of episiotomy among women attending antenatal clinic in a secondary health facility in North-West Nigeria

M.S. Ibrahim, B Zakaria, B.B. Lawal


Background: Episiotomy is a common surgical procedure experienced by women worldwide to ease labor and improve its outcome. However, it could influence the use of delivery services because of its associated complications. The study assessed knowledge and perception of episiotomy among antenatal clinic (ANC)

Methods: It was a cross‑sectional study conducted among 218 women attending ANC in a secondary health facility in Northwestern Nigeria. Data were collected using a structured, interviewer‑administered questionnaire and were analyzed using IBM SPSS Statistics 20.

Results: The mean age of women attending ANC was 24.2 ± 6.6 years, and 31 (14.2%) of them had had an episiotomy in the past. A majority of them were aware of episiotomy (87.6%) and had good knowledge (83.5%) and good perception (77.5%) of it. In addition, a majority (89.0%) were willing to deliver at the facility even if episiotomy would be given during labor. Knowledge of episiotomy showed statistically significant association with only a history of previous delivery while perception did not show statistically significant association with any of the independent variables.

Conclusions: Awareness and knowledge of episiotomy among women attending ANC were high and perception of it was generally good. The major factor associated with the knowledge of episiotomy was a history of previous delivery. Effort should be channeled toward improving awareness and knowledge on episiotomy among intending mothers, and health workers should always ensure that women are adequately informed and counseled before an episiotomy is given to them.

Keywords: Episiotomy, knowledge, Northwest Nigeria, perception

AJOL African Journals Online