Tuesday, June 9, 2015

psychological characteristics of women seeking multiple abortions


Repeat abortion is a public health concern favored by many obstetric and social factors.

The purpose of our study was to identify associated factors to repeated abortion in the region of Monastir (Tunisia). Common mental disorders (CMD) such as anxiety and depression were also evaluated in women seeking voluntary repeated abortion.


We carried out a cross sectional study between January and April 2013 in the Reproductive Health Center (RHC) of the region of Monastir in Tunisia (This study is part of a prospective design on mental disorders and intimate partner violence among women seeking abortions in the RHC).

Among women referred to the RHC we selected those seeking voluntary abortion (medical or surgical method). Data on women’s demographic characters, knowledge and practices about contraceptive methods and abortion were collected the abortion day via a structured questionnaire. Data about anxiety and depression status were evaluated during the post-abortal control visit at 3–4 weeks following pregnancy termination.


Of the 500 interviewed women, 211 (42.2 %; CI95% [37.88 – 46.52]) were seeking repeated abortions. Multivariate analysis showed that increased age, lower level of women school education, single status, poor knowledge about birth control methods and history of conflict/abuse by a male partner, were uniquely associated with undergoing repeat compared with initial abortion.

CMD were significantly higher in women undergoing second or subsequent abortion (51.1 %) single and lower educated women. Women relating a history of conflicts/abuse report more CMD than others (30.6 % vs 20.8 %).


Health facilities providing abortion services need to pay more attention to women seeking repeat abortion. Further studies are needed to well establish the relation between the number of abortion and the occurrence and the severity of CMD.

Abortion, Induced; Aged; Contraception; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Violence; Mental disorders

full txt:
Obstetric and psychological characteristics of women seeking multiple abortions in the region of Monastir (Tunisia): results of a cross-sectional design