Some reproductive and sexual health indicators in rape victims in Ukraine
The objective was to study the demographics and some reproductive health indicators in Ukrainian women who reported having been raped. On the basis of responses to a questionnaire, we evaluated factors associated with a history of rape by a case-referent approach, using women reporting rape (n=177) as the dependent variable in comparison to those without such an experience (n=1444). Women reporting rape were more often younger than those without a history of rape. There was an association between a history of rape and three or more induced abortions. Rape victims were more likely to have a history of sexually transmitted infections and pelvic inflammatory diseases. A history of rape was more often associated with smoking and previous drug use. Women who had experienced rape more often reported more than one sexual partner during the last six months as well as during the previous year. On the other hand, these women reported sexual intercourse less frequently than did those without a history of rape. Rape victims more often reported sexual harassment at where they work or socialize as well as sexual abuse in childhood or within their family. Thus, a history of rape was common and associated with several negative health indicators. Sexual violence needs to be acknowledged in all parts of the Ukrainian society as a serious threat that requires urgent attention for the improvement of women’s reproductive and general health and human rights.
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