Intimate partner violence and contraception use among women in Sub-Saharan Africa

Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2009 Oct;107(1):35-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2009.05.002. Epub 2009 May 29.


Objective: To determine the association between contraceptive use and intimate partner violence (IPV) in Sub-Saharan African women.

Method: The data analyzed were from national Demographic Health Surveys conducted between 2003 and 2006 in 6 Sub-Saharan African countries: Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, and Zimbabwe. Women of childbearing age completed surveys regarding the use of contraception and about their experience of physical, emotional, and sexual violence inflicted by their partners. Analyses were conducted using logistic regression.

Results: Of the 24311 women who responded to the violence modules, 39.8% reported that they had experienced IPV. Women who had experienced IPV were significantly more likely to report that they had used contraception compared with women who had not experienced IPV (odds ratio 1.30; 95% confidence interval, 1.22-1.38).

Conclusion: Intimate partner violence appears to be associated with increased contraception use in the African setting. Among women who have experienced IPV, modern contraception is used more commonly than traditional and folkloric contraceptive methods.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Africa South of the Sahara
  • Contraception / methods
  • Contraception / statistics & numerical data*
  • Contraception Behavior / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Spouse Abuse / statistics & numerical data*
  • Young Adult