Associations between Disability and Infertility among U.S. Reproductive-Aged Women
ABSTRACT: We aim to evaluate the association between self-reported disabilities and infertility and whether disabilities are associated with decreased likelihood of seeking infertility-related care. This US nationally representative cross-sectional analysis includes 3789 non-pregnant women aged 18–49 years without history of hysterectomy or oophorectomy (NHANES, 2013–2018). Disabilities and infertility were both self-reported in personal interviews with trained interviewers. Logistic regression models estimated the adjusted odds ratio (aOR) and 95% confidence intervals for the association between disabilities and infertility and related care seeking. Models adjusted for potential confounders and complex probability sampling. Compared to women without disabilities, women with disabilities (WWD) had higher odds of infertility (aOR: 1.78 (1.31–2.40)). Similar findings were observed for sensory (2.32 (1.52–3.52)) and cognitive disabilities (1.77 (1.28–2.44)). Among women with infertility, WWD were less likely to seek infertility-related care (0.68 (0.32–1.44)) but these estimates were not statistically significant. WWD have increased odds of reporting infertility, and if affected, are less likely to visit a health care provider for this condition. While more research is needed to understand reproductive health issues and needs among WWD, it is important to push for more equitable policies and practices to address the health needs of this underserved population.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Secondary infertility in developing countries is mostly attributable to blockage of the fallopian tubes due to adhesions caused by reproductive tract infections. There is a dearth of information on the prevalence and causes of secondary infertility from Pakistan. This paper presents results on factors associated with secondary infertility among married women in Karachi, Pakistan. METHODS: A matched case-control study was conducted. Cases were women aged 15-35 years with history of at least one previous conception and currently seeking treatment for secondary infertility. Controls were women residing in the neighborhood of cases with at least one live birth and not taking treatment for secondary infertility. The age of controls was matched by ±5 years to that of cases. Data was collected from June to August 2003. Conditional logistic regression was used to determine crude and adjusted odds ratios (OR) with corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI) for factors associated with secondary infertility. RESULTS: The final multivariate logistic regression model revealed that after adjusting for age, cases were more likely to be the housewives (AOR = 2.6, 95% CI:1.5-4.4), had used inappropriate material to absorb blood during menstruation (AOR = 9.0, 95% CI: 5.0-16.4), and at their last delivery, had a birth attendant who did not wash hands with soap and water (AOR = 3.0, 95% CI: 1.4-5.7). Moreover, women with secondary infertility were more likely to report current or past history of having STI symptoms (AOR = 3.6, 95% CI: 2.4-5.6) and use of intra-vaginal indigenous medicines during their last post-partum period (AOR = 3.1, 95% CI: 1.6-5.7). CONCLUSION: We recommend health education and awareness messages for safe practices during menstruation, delivery, and the postpartum period for women in general. Additionally, sanitary napkins should be made available at an affordable cost, and safe delivery kits should contain educational/pictorial brochures for appropriate hand washing skills.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:Deep dyspareunia is a cardinal symptom of endometriosis, and as many as 40% of people with this condition experience comorbid superficial dyspareunia. AIM:To evaluate the relationship between sexual pain and infertility concerns among women with endometriosis. METHODS:This is a cross-sectional study conducted at a university-based tertiary center for endometriosis. 300 reproductive-aged participants in the prospective Endometriosis Pelvic Pain Interdisciplinary Cohort (ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02911090) with histologically confirmed endometriosis were included (2013-2017). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:The total score on the infertility concerns module of the Endometriosis Health Profile-30 categorized into 5 groups (0, 1-4, 5-8, 9-12, 13-16). RESULTS:The odds of infertility concerns did not increase with severity of deep dyspareunia (odds ratio = 1.02, 95% CI: 0.95-1.09, P = .58). However, the odds of infertility concerns increased with severity of superficial dyspareunia (odds ratio = 1.09, 95% CI: 1.02-1.16, P = .011); this relationship persisted after adjusting for endometriosis-specific factors, infertility risk factors, reproductive history, and demographic characteristics (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = 1.14, 95% CI: 1.06-1.24, P < .001). Other factors in the model independently associated with increased infertility concerns were previous difficulty conceiving (AOR = 2.09, 95% CI 1.04-4.19, P = .038), currently trying to conceive (AOR = 5.23, 95% CI 2.77-9.98, P < .001), nulliparity (AOR = 3.21, 95% CI 1.63-6.41, P < .001), and younger age (AOR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.89-0.98, P = .005). CONCLUSION:Severity of superficial dyspareunia, but not deep dyspareunia, was associated with increased odds of infertility concerns among women with endometriosis. Strengths of the study included the use of a validated measure of infertility concerns and disaggregation of sexual pain into deep and superficial dyspareunia. Limitations included the setting of a tertiary center for pelvic pain, which affects generalizability to fertility clinic and primary care settings. Women experiencing introital dyspareunia, who can have difficulties with achieving penetrative intercourse, may be concerned about their future fertility and should be counselled appropriately. Wahl KJ, Orr NL, Lisonek M, et al. Deep Dyspareunia, Superficial Dyspareunia, and Infertility Concerns Among Women With Endometriosis: A Cross-Sectional Study. Sex Med 2020;8:274-281.
Project description:<h4>Objective</h4>Veterans, especially those residing in rural areas, continue to underutilize mental health care. This longitudinal study assessed attitudes relevant to seeking mental health care services from the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) over 12 months, adjusting for residence.<h4>Methods</h4>A questionnaire addressing attitudes, sociodemographic factors, residence, place identity, perceived health status and needs, and structural barriers was administered by telephone to 752 veterans with previous VHA service use. Service use data were obtained from a VHA database.<h4>Results</h4>In adjusted models, four attitudes were significantly associated with underuse of VHA mental health care (no use vs. any use; no use vs. nonsustained use vs. sustained use). Higher levels of mistrust of others (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]=1.06, p=0.046), emotional stoicism (AOR=1.08, p=0.003), belief in the self-resolving nature of mental health problems (AOR=1.91, p=0.015), and belief in the efficacy of religious counseling for such problems (AOR=1.09, p=0.022) were associated with no subsequent service use versus any use. Place identity (suburban), older age, and greater need were associated with greater odds of VHA use. For the comparison of no use versus sustained use, women had lower odds of no use (AOR=0.49, p<0.001); similarly, women had lower odds of nonsustained use versus sustained use (AOR=0.45, p<0.001).<h4>Conclusions</h4>The association of potentially modifiable attitudes with underuse of VHA mental health services suggests that attitudes offer useful targets for efforts to increase mental health care use. That these attitudes were influential regardless of residence suggests that programs addressing attitudinal barriers can be broadly targeted.
Project description:<h4>Objective</h4>The current study aims to define patient-centred infertility care (PCIC) from the perspective of Arab women with infertility.<h4>Design</h4>Semistructured in-depth telephone interviews.<h4>Setting</h4>Hospitals providing infertility care, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.<h4>Participants</h4>Arab women who received infertility treatment during the 6 months preceding the interview at any hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Interviews were conducted with Arab women experiencing infertility from January 2017 to December 2018. A purposive sample of 14 women were included in the final analysis with maximum variation.<h4>Results</h4>Participants highlighted nine important PCIC dimensions. Of these, four were agreed on by all participants: accessibility, minimising cost, information and education, and staff attitudes and communication. The remaining five dimensions were staff competence, physical comfort, privacy, psychological and emotional support, and continuity and coordination of care. The concept of PCIC was related to three major contributors: participants' demographics, patient experience with infertility care and health-seeking behaviour.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The current study provided nine PCIC dimensions and items, which can guide efforts to improve the quality of infertility care in Arab countries in two ways: first, by raising infertility care providers' awareness of their patients' needs, and second, by developing a validated tool based on the dimensions for measuring PCIC from Arab patients' perspective. Clear differences between the Arab and the European PCIC model were found. Our findings concluded that women continued to exhibit basic unmet needs.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Prior studies have found higher proportions of cesarean deliveries and longer postpartum hospital stays among women with disabilities compared to women without disabilities. However, no research has assessed how length of stay may differ for women with different types of disability while also considering mode of delivery.<h4>Objective</h4>To examine the association of disability status and disability type with length of stay, taking into account disability-related differences in mode of delivery.<h4>Methods</h4>We conducted a retrospective cohort study using linked maternal and infant hospital discharge and vital records data for all births in California between 2000 and 2012 (n = 6,745,201). We used multivariable regression analyses to assess association of disability status and type with prolonged length of stay (>2 days for vaginal delivery or >4 days for cesarean) while controlling for covariates.<h4>Results</h4>Women with disabilities had significantly elevated adjusted odds of prolonged length of stay compared to women without disabilities (aOR = 1.40, 95% CI = 1.32-1.49). Adjusted odds were highest for women with vision disabilities (aOR = 1.67, 95% CI = 1.46-1.90), followed by women with IDD (aOR = 1.53, 95% CI = 1.30-1.80), and women with physical disabilities (aOR = 1.41, 95% CI = 1.32-1.50). Women with hearing disability had the lowest adjusted odds of prolonged length of stay (aOR = 1.17, 95% CI = 1.03-1.33).<h4>Conclusions</h4>Prolonged length of stay did not appear to be due solely to the higher proportion of cesarean deliveries in this population. Further research is needed to better understand the reasons for prolonged length of stay among women with disabilities and develop strategies to assist women with disabilities in preparing for and recovering from childbirth.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Maternal and child health care services are available in both public and private facilities in Nepal. Studies have not yet looked at trends in maternal and child health service use over time in Nepal. This paper assesses trends in and determinants of visiting private health facilities for maternal and child health needs using nationally representative data from the last three successive Nepal Demographic Health Surveys (NDHS).<h4>Methods</h4>Data from the NDHS conducted in 2006, 2011, and 2016 were used. Maternal and child health-seeking was established using data on place of antenatal care (ANC), place of delivery, and place of treatment for child diarrhoea and fever/cough. Logistic regression models were fitted to identify trends in and determinants of health-seeking at private facilities.<h4>Results</h4>The results indicate an increase in the use of private facilities for maternal and child health care over time. Across the three survey waves, women from the highest wealth quintile had the highest odds of accessing ANC services at private health facilities (AOR?=?3.0, 95% CI?=?1.53, 5.91 in 2006; AOR?=?5.6, 95% CI?=?3.51, 8.81 in 2011; AOR?=?6.0, 95% CI?=?3.78, 9.52 in 2016). Women from the highest wealth quintile (AOR?=?3.3, 95% CI?=?1.54, 7.09 in 2006; AOR?=?7.3, 95% CI?=?3.91, 13.54 in 2011; AOR?=?8.3, 95% CI?=?3.97, 17.42 in 2016) and women with more years of schooling (AOR?=?1.2, 95% CI?=?1.17, 1.27 in 2006; AOR?=?1.1, 95% CI?=?1.04, 1.14 in 2011; AOR?=?1.1, 95% CI?=?1.07, 1.16 in 2016) were more likely to deliver in private health facilities. Likewise, children belonging to the highest wealth quintile (AOR?=?8.0, 95% CI?=?2.43, 26.54 in 2006; AOR?=?6.4, 95% CI?=?1.59, 25.85 in 2016) were more likely to receive diarrhoea treatment in private health facilities.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Women are increasingly visiting private health facilities for maternal and child health care in Nepal. Household wealth quintile and more years of schooling were the major determinants for selecting private health facilities for these services. These trends indicate the importance of collaboration between private and public health facilities in Nepal to foster a public private partnership approach in the Nepalese health care sector.
Project description:<b>Background:</b> Prior research has found that women with disabilities are more likely to deliver by cesarean than are women without disabilities. It is not clear whether all of the cesarean deliveries among women with disabilities are medically necessary.<b>Objectives:</b> To examine the associations between maternal disability status and type, mode of delivery, and medical indications for cesarean delivery in California deliveries.<b>Study design:</b> Retrospective cohort study of all nulliparous births in California between 2000 and 2012. We classified births as to whether or not women underwent a trial of labor and determined if medical indications for cesarean delivery were present. Multivariable logistic regression models examined the association of disability with trial of labor and indications for cesarean delivery.<b>Results:</b> Women with disabilities had lower odds of having a labored delivery, compared to women without disabilities (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 0.45, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.41-0.49). In the sample of women who labored (90.5% of total), women with disabilities were more likely to have a medical indication for cesarean delivery (aOR = 1.15, 95% CI 1.10-1.21) and were more likely to have a cesarean delivery (aOR = 1.46, 95% CI = 1.38-1.54). In the subsample of unlabored cesarean deliveries, women with disabilities were less likely to have documented medical indications for cesarean delivery (aOR = 0.45, 95% CI = 0.41-0.50).<b>Conclusions:</b> Women with disabilities were less likely to labor, and these unlabored cesarean deliveries were less likely to have a medical indication for cesarean, compared to women without disabilities.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Disabilities affect more than 1 in 5 US adults, and those with disabilities face multiple barriers in accessing health care. A digital gap, defined as the disparity caused by differences in the ability to use advanced technologies, is assumed to be prevalent among individuals with disabilities. OBJECTIVE:This study examined the associations between disability and use of information technology (IT) in obtaining health information and between trust factors and IT use. We hypothesized that compared to US adults without disabilities, those with disabilities are less likely to refer to the internet for health information, more likely to refer to a health care provider to obtain health information, and less likely to use IT to exchange medical information with a provider. Additionally, we hypothesized that trust factors, such as trust toward health information source and willingness to exchange health information, are associated with IT use. METHODS:The primary database was the 2013 Health Information National Trends Survey 4 Cycle 3 (N=3185). Disability status, the primary study covariate, was based on 6 questions that encompassed a wide spectrum of conditions, including impairments in mobility, cognition, independent living, vision, hearing, and self-care. Study covariates included sociodemographic factors, respondents' trust toward the internet and provider as information sources, and willingness to exchange medical information via IT with providers. Study outcomes were the use of the internet as the primary health information source, use of health care providers as the primary health information source, and use of IT to exchange medical information with providers. We conducted multivariate logistic regressions to examine the association between disability and study outcomes controlling for study covariates. Multiple imputations with fully conditional specification were used to impute missing values. RESULTS:We found presence of any disability was associated with decreased odds (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 0.65, 95% CI 0.43-0.98) of obtaining health information from the internet, in particular for those with vision disability (AOR 0.27, 95% CI 0.11-0.65) and those with mobility disability (AOR 0.51, 95% CI 0.30-0.88). Compared to those without disabilities, those with disabilities were significantly more likely to consult a health care provider for health information in both actual (OR 2.21, 95% CI 1.54-3.18) and hypothetical situations (OR 1.80, 95% CI 1.24-2.60). Trust toward health information from the internet (AOR 3.62, 95% CI 2.07-6.33), and willingness to exchange via IT medical information with a provider (AOR 1.88, 95% CI 1.57-2.24) were significant predictors for seeking and exchanging such information, respectively. CONCLUSIONS:A potential digital gap may exist among US adults with disabilities in terms of their recent use of the internet for health information. Trust toward health information sources and willingness play an important role in people's engagement in use of the internet for health information. Future studies should focus on addressing trust factors associated with IT use and developing tools to improve access to care for those with disabilities.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Given the complexity of infertility diagnoses and treatments and the convenience of the internet for finding health-related information, people undergoing infertility treatments often use Web-based resources to obtain infertility information and support. However, little is known about the types of information and support resources infertility patients search for on the internet and whether these resources meet their needs. OBJECTIVE:The aims of this study were to (1) examine what individual factors, namely, demographic characteristics and distress, are associated with searching the internet for different types of infertility-related information and support resources and (2) determine whether Web-based resources meet the needs of patients. METHODS:Men and women seeking infertility care responded to a survey assessing use of Web-based resources for accessing infertility-related information and support. The survey further assessed satisfaction with Web-based resources as well as perceived stress and depressive symptomatology. RESULTS:A total of 567 participants, including 254 men and 313 women, completed the survey. Most participants (490/558, 87.8%) had searched the internet for infertility information and support. Searchers were more likely to be women (P<.001), highly educated (P=.04), long-term patients (P=.03), and more distressed (P=.04). Causes of infertility, treatment options, and scientific literature about infertility were the three most frequently searched topics, whereas ways to discuss treatment with family and friends as well as surrogacy and ways to find peer support were the three least searched topics. Of those who searched the internet, 70.9% (346/488) indicated that their needs were met by Web-based information, whereas 29.1% (142/488) said that their needs were not met. Having unmet needs was related to greater levels of perceived stress (P=.005) and depressive symptomatology (P=.03). CONCLUSIONS:This study provides evidence for the important role of the internet in accessing infertility information and support and for the ability of Web-based resources to meet patients' needs. However, although distressed patients reported particularly high rates of searching, their needs were not always met, suggesting that they may benefit from alternative sources of information and support or guidance from health care providers when searching the internet.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Infertility affects about 15% of couples in Western-societies with most progressing to fertility clinics for treatment. Despite being common, infertility is often experienced as a lonely road for affected couples. In this paper we expand on our previously published findings of women's experiences with infertility or difficulty of viable pregnancy who had sought Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) therapy in Australia, and focus on women's quality of life, coping strategies, and support needs.<h4>Methods</h4>We applied mixed methods using the Tuebingen Quality of Life and the COPE questionnaires and in-depth interviews with 25 women with primary or secondary infertility, recurrent miscarriages or unexplained stillbirth, and who had consulted a TCM practitioner. We used a thematic approach to analyse the interviews, and descriptive statistics to evaluate questionnaire responses.<h4>Results</h4>Women reported through both questionnaires and interviews compromised quality of life due to the high level of distress, guilt, grief, and frustration caused by infertility. However, our women represented a highly motivated sample, actively seeking alternative support. While the TCM approach to infertility management increased women's sense of personal agency and control through education and continuity of care, the need for greater understanding and support on a societal level remains.<h4>Conclusions</h4>In infertility, ongoing emotional and instrumental support is pivotal to the wellbeing and quality of life of the affected. Traditional Chinese Medicine addresses some support needs in infertility not routinely available in the Western model of care. More peer-led and professional-led support groups are greatly needed for women experiencing infertility to help break isolation and raise awareness of integrative approaches to fertility management.