Main Article Content
Background: Despite the usefulness of the placenta for biomedical research, personal, socioeconomic and cultural factors, especially in Africa undermine the willingness of mothers to freely donate their placentas for research purposes.
Aim: The objective of this study was to assess the perception and attitude of pregnant women towards placenta donation for biomedical research in a tertiary health institution.
Methods: Data from this cross sectional study were collected through self-administered questionnaire to consenting pregnant women attending antenatal clinics of the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital, Uyo, over a period of two (2) months in 2013.
Results: A total of 264 respondents were included in the study. The modal age group was 26- 35years, and accounting for 153 respondents (58.0%). The vast majority (86.7%) of the respondents had prior knowledge of what the placenta is, with the majority of them (78.4%) attesting to the fact that the uterus is the organ where the placenta is located. As regards their attitude towards placenta donation, 166 (62.9%) respondents expressed their willingness to leave their placentas behind in the hospital, while 94 (35.6%) respondents preferred to go home with their placentas. Only 34.1% of all respondents (n = 90) expressed their willingness to donate their placenta for biomedical research.
Conclusion: Only a minority of women in our environment would willingly donate their placentas for biomedical research.
Keywords: Public perspective, Mothers, Placental donation, Bio-medical research.