Reproductive health of women with and without disabilities in South India, the SIDE study (South India Disability Evidence) study: A case control study

South India Disability Evidence Study Group

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14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Evidence shows that women with disability have adverse pregnancy outcomes compared to those without a disability. There is a lack of published data on reproductive health of women with disability in India till date. The objective of the South India Disability Evidence (SIDE) Study was to compare reproductive health parameters including pregnancy experience, health access during pregnancy and type of delivery among women with disability compared to women with no disability. Methods: The study was conducted in one district each in two States (Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka) in 2012. A case-control design was used to identify appropriate age and sex-matched controls for women with disability identified through a population-based survey. Trained key informants first listed women with disabilities who were then examined by a medical team to confirm the diagnosis. Trained research investigators administered questionnaire schedules to both groups of women to collect information on reproductive health and outcomes of any pregnancy experienced in the past two years. Results: A total of 247 women with disability and 324 age-matched controls aged 15-45 years were recruited for the study. 87% of the women with disability had a physical disability. The mean age of women with disability was 29.86 against 29.71 years among women without a disability. A significantly lower proportion of women with disability experienced pregnancy (36.8%) compared to women without a disability (X2 -16.02 P < 0.001). The odds ratio for suffering from diabetes among women with disability compared to women without a disability was 19.3 (95% CI: 1.2- 313.9), while it was 9.5 (95% CI: 2.2-40.8) for depression. A higher proportion of women without a disability (7.7%) compared to women with a disability (5.3%) reported a successful pregnancy in the past two years. There were no statistically significant differences between women with and without a disability with regard to utilization of antenatal care and pregnancy outcomes. Conclusions: The study provides evidence on some reproductive health parameters of women with disability in India for the first time ever. The findings will help in formulating policy and to develop specific interventions to improve pregnancy outcomes for women with disability in India.

Original languageEnglish
Article number146
JournalBMC Women's Health
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

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