Original Research

The association between intimate partner violence, psychiatric morbidity amongst pregnant women and partner alcohol use in southern Nigeria

Oluyemisi Adebowale, Bawo James
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 12, No 1 | a2226 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v12i1.2226 | © 2020 Oluyemisi Adebowale, Bawo James | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 19 August 2019 | Published: 02 July 2020

About the author(s)

Oluyemisi Adebowale, Department of Clinical Services, Federal Neuro- Psychiatric Hospital, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria
Bawo James, Department of Clinical Services, Federal Neuro- Psychiatric Hospital, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria

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Background: Intimate partner violence (IPV) against women is common, although prevalence and correlates amongst pregnant women in developing countries are poorly researched.

Aim: To identify the magnitude of IPV, and its relationship with psychiatric morbidity and partner alcohol use.

Setting: This study was conducted among women receiving routine ante-natal care at a secondary level healthcare facility in southern Nigeria.

Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted by recruiting pregnant women (n = 395) attending the Ante-Natal Clinic of the Central Hospital, Benin-City, Edo State, Nigeria, between August 2015 and February 2016 and undertaking face-to-face interviews utilising a socio-demographic questionnaire, the Composite Abuse Scale and the 20-item Self-reporting Questionnaire.

Results: Past 12-month prevalence of IPV was 24.8%, with emotional abuse being the commonest type (89.8%). Forty-six participants (11.6%) screened positive for probable psychiatric morbidity. Predictors of IPV included partner alcohol use in the past 12 months (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 2.67; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.16–6.16; p < 0.02), having a psychiatric morbidity (aOR: 2.53; 95% CI: 1.27–5.04; p < 0.01), being single (aOR: 2.12; 95% CI: 1.25–3.58; p < 0.01) and multiparous (aOR: 2.5; 95% CI: 1.43–4.38; p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Intimate partner violence was common amongst pregnant women in Nigeria. Identified modifiable risk factors can be targets for screening and intervention for women in these settings.


intimate partner violence; psychiatric morbidity; pregnancy; partner alcohol use; Nigeria


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