Comparison of demographic data of single and married women attending a private clinic in Turkey for induced abortion

Comparison of demographic data of single and married women

attending a private clinic in Turkey for induced abortion

M. Sezik1, H. Toyran

Sezik2, O. Ozkaya1, O. Buyukkaytan2

1Suleyman Demirel University Faculty of

Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Isparta, Turkey, 2Ozel

Isparta Kadin Sagligi Merkezi, Isparta, Turkey

Objective Isparta province is

located in southwestern Turkey with approximately 500,000 inhabitants.

Politically, conservatives have traditionally been dominant in the district. A

local university educating over 20,000 students was founded in 1990s. Our aim

was to evaluate the characteristics of single (never married) women undergoing

induced abortions in a private clinic located in Isparta.

Design and methods

Medical records of 253 consecutive women requiring an induced abortion

throughout a 12-month period were reviewed. The variables recorded and analyzed

were maternal age, gestational age, graviditiy, number of previous spontaneous

and induced abortions, marital status, employment, educational status, area of

accommodation, and contraceptive history. Student’s t-test and chi-square test

were used for comparisons across single and married groups of women. Data were

given as mean ± standard deviations.

Results There were 199 (78.7%) married,

48 (19%) single (never-married), and 6 (2.3%) divorced women. Mean maternal age

(32.1±6.5 years versus 21.9±3.5 years; p<0.0001), gravidity (3.8±1.9 versus 1.1±0.3; p<0.0001), and number of previous induced abortions (0.6±1.1 versus 0.1±0.3; p<0.0001) were higher in married women compared to single women. Married women presented at an earlier gestational age (6.2±1.3 weeks versus 6.9±1.5 weeks; p=0.012). About 80% (n=39) of the single women (compared to 57%, n=114) were living in the urban area (p=0.04). Most of the (67.3%, n=134) married women were housewives, whereas students comprised 58% (n=28) of the single women (versus 14% of the married women; p<0.0001). The percentages of teachers (4.8% and 4.5%) and nurses (4.8% and 5.5%) were similar across the groups. Over 80% (n=40) of the single women were not using any contraceptive methods versus 33.2% (n=66) nonusers in the married group (p<0.0001). None of the single women were on oral contraceptives or using intrauterine device. The condom usage was also less common (4.2% compared to 15.5%; p<0.05) in single women.

Conclusions In the defined region of Turkey, single women requesting

induced abortions were frequently university students living in the urban area

and presented at later gestation compared to their married counterparts. Lack of

contraceptive usage was common in unmarried women. Our data indicate urgent need

for establishing contraception education programs in Turkey among unmarried

women including university students.

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