Hysterectomy in a Danish cohort. Prevalence, incidence and socio-demographic characteristics

Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 1996 Mar;75(3):274-80. doi: 10.3109/00016349609047101.


Background: The aim has been to assess the frequency of hysterectomy in relation to sociodemographic characteristics.

Materials and methods: A cross-sectional survey of 2,403 women selected at random from the population in the western part of Copenhagen County. One thousand seven hundred and sixty-five Danish women (77%) filled in the questionnaire and took part in the interview. The cohort was followed for eight years through central registers to assess the incidence of hysterectomy. Logistic and Cox regression were used as main statistics.

Results: Life time prevalence of hysterectomy was 10.4%. In the prevalence study, hysterectomy on benign diagnoses (85%) was related to short schooling, lack of vocational education, and low social status personally as well as regards the family. In the multivariate analyses school education, vocational education, and ascending social status by marriage were independent explanatory variables. In the incidence study, the crude rate of hysterectomy on benign diagnoses was 3.4 pr. 1000 years, with the 40-year-old women having the highest rate (7.8 pr. 1000 years). Risk factors as regards hysterectomy due to bleeding disorders and uterine fibroids at ages <50 (premenopausal) were unemployment and lack of vocational education, only the latter reached significant level in the multivariate analysis.

Conclusion: There are social inequalities regarding premenopausal hysterectomy on benign diagnoses, but the social-demographic indicators of interest have changed through the last decades. Short schooling and lack of social mobility by marriage were only associated with the hysterectomies performed before 1982, whereas lack of vocational education was related to hysterectomy independent of the calendar period involved. A woman without education has a relative risk of 2.2 (1.1-4.4) for hysterectomy compared to an educated woman.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Cohort Studies
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Cultural Characteristics
  • Demography
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Denmark / ethnology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysterectomy / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Random Allocation
  • Sampling Studies
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Uterine Diseases / epidemiology
  • Uterine Diseases / surgery*
  • Uterine Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Uterine Neoplasms / surgery*