Journal of
Public Health and Epidemiology

  • Abbreviation: J. Public Health Epidemiol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2316
  • DOI: 10.5897/JPHE
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 469

Full Length Research Paper

Incidence of pre-pregnancy and pregnancy-related illnesses in rural women accessing antenatal care services in Awka, south-east, Nigeria

Ugoma Deborah Ezeani
  • Ugoma Deborah Ezeani
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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Olaoluwa Samson Agbaje
  • Olaoluwa Samson Agbaje
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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Chucks E. Ezedum
  • Chucks E. Ezedum
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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Prince Iheanachor Christian Umoke
  • Prince Iheanachor Christian Umoke
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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Cylia N. Iweama
  • Cylia N. Iweama
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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Kiloh A. Nfor
  • Kiloh A. Nfor
  • Department of Health and Physical Education, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
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  •  Received: 04 March 2018
  •  Accepted: 20 April 2018
  •  Published: 31 July 2018

Abstract

Nigeria accounts for a considerable proportion of maternal deaths that occur annually worldwide. The study investigated the incidence of pre-pregnancy and pregnancy-related illnesses in women accessing antenatal care services at health facilities in Awka South Local Government Area, Anambra State. The study adopted cross-sectional research design. The population comprised 3,207 registered pregnant women from January to September 2012. The sample for the study consisted of 650 pregnant women. A pre-tested questionnaire was administered by the interviewers to women who had attended antenatal care services within six months prior to the date of data collection. Malaria (66.6%), morning sickness (58.0%), hyperemesis gravidarum (39.7%), sexually transmitted infections (28.6%), gestational diabetes (23.8%), pre-eclampsia and eclampsia (23.0%) and anaemia (15.8%) were the common illnesses in women. There were statistically significant differences in the women’s pre-pregnancy illnesses according to the level of education (p = 0.032) and pregnancy-related illnesses according to age (p = 0.023) and level of education (p = 0.045). It was concluded that the interplay of several factors is responsible for the incidence of pre-pregnancy and pregnancy-related illnesses in women. Identification of these factors is expedient while scaling up of maternal health interventions; improved access and uptake of facility-based care hopefully, will drastically reduce morbid conditions in women and improve maternal and newborn outcomes.

Key words: Prevalence, Pregnancy-related illnesses, antenatal care, maternal health.