Original Research

Scoping review of risk factors of and interventions for adolescent repeat pregnancies: A public health perspective

Desiree Govender, Saloshni Naidoo, Myra Taylor
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 10, No 1 | a1685 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v10i1.1685 | © 2018 Desiree Govender, Saloshni Naidoo, Myra Taylor | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 14 November 2017 | Published: 19 June 2018

About the author(s)

Desiree Govender, KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa;Discipline of Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Saloshni Naidoo, Discipline of Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Myra Taylor, Discipline of Public Health, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa


Background: Adolescent repeat pregnancy is of importance in public health because the birth of a second child to an adolescent mother compounds the adverse medical, educational, socioeconomic and parenting outcomes. Repeat pregnancy in adolescence is not only an international phenomenon but also a local concern as it also occurs in South Africa. The prevalence of adolescent repeat pregnancy in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, was reported as 17.6% in 2013.

Aim: This review aimed to gather relevant information from national and international sources to inform practice and to provide an understanding of what is known about the risk factors of and the interventions for adolescent repeat pregnancy.

Methods: A scoping review was undertaken using the Arksey and O’Malley framework. An electronic search was conducted using PubMed, Medline, Science Direct, Ebscohost, Sage and Wiley Online and Google Scholar.

Results: The search identified 3032 citations. After a review of the full text articles, 26 articles met the inclusion criteria. Risk factors pertaining to adolescent repeat pregnancy are categorised according to individual factors, partner relationship factors, family factors, peer factors, and social and community factors. Interventions to reduce adolescent repeat pregnancy have been largely influenced by the ecological framework. Across studies, adolescent mothers who received medical, psychosocial, educational, and family planning support experienced lower rates of repeat pregnancy.

Conclusion: A single ‘one-size-fits-all’ intervention for adolescent repeat pregnancy prevention is unlikely as different strategies were employed by the intervention programmes in this scoping review.


adolescent repeat pregnancy; intervention; risk factors


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Crossref Citations

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