Domestic Violence and Gynecological Morbidity in Uttar Pradesh, India

Rob Stephenson, Emory University
Michael Koenig, Johns Hopkins University

This study examines the impact of physical and sexual domestic violence on self-reported gynecological morbidity among married women of reproductive age (15-45) in Uttar Pradesh, India, using matched couple data from the 1995-96 PERFORM System of Indicators Survey. A logistic regression model is fitted, with experiencing symptoms of gynecological morbidity as the outcome. The key individual variable of interest is whether the husband reports physical and/or sexual domestic violence towards his wife (data on domestic violence is collected only from the husband). The study finds evidence of a positive relationship between experiencing domestic violence and a woman’s self-reporting of gynecological morbidity. Women who experience both sexual and physical violence are the most likely to report gynecological morbidity, although there is no independent effect of physical violence on gynecological morbidity. The results indicate a number of pathways, including physical and psychological, through which violence influences gynecological morbidity.

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Presented in Session 43: Domestic Violence, Sexual Behaviors, and Reproductive Health