Assessing the Prevalence and Determinants of Unwanted Pregnancy and Induced Abortion in Nigeria

Authors

  • Friday E. Okonofua,

    1. Friday E. Okonofua is Director, Women's Health and Action Research Centre, 4 Alofoje Street, Off Uwasota Street, Post Office Box 10231, Ugbowo, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Clifford Odimegwu,

    1. Clifford Odimegwu is Lecturer, Department of Demography, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Helen Ajabor,

    1. Helen Ajabor is Administrative Manager and Health Assistant, Women's Health and Action Research Centre, 4 Alofoje Street, Off Uwasota Street, Post Office Box 10231, Ugbowo, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Patrick H. Daru,

    1. Patrick H. Daru is Lecturer, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Jos Teaching Hospital, Jos, Nigeria.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Agnes Johnson

    1. Agnes Johnson is Lecturer, Department of Sociology, University of Jos.
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

This study was conducted to determine the prevalence and sociodemographic determinants of unwanted pregnancy and induced abortion in the Jos and Ife local government areas of Nigeria. A total of 1,516 randomly selected women aged 15–45 responded to a pretested structured questionnaire designed to elicit information concerning previous unwanted pregnancies and induced abortions in a value-free manner. Nearly 20 percent of the women reported having had an unwanted pregnancy. Of these, 58 percent reported that they had successfully terminated the pregnancies; 32 percent continued the pregnancies; and nearly 9 percent stated that they had attempted termination but failed. Overall, the prevalence of self-reports of induced abortion was 11 percent. The results reveal that information can be obtained on abortion in areas with restrictive abortion policies if an indirect interviewing approach is used.

Ancillary