BMC pregnancy and childbirth 2016 Oct 2616(1) 327
Domestic violence is a global health problem as well as a violation against human rights. The aim of this study was to explore prevalence and incidence of domestic violence during pregnancy and 1 to 1.5 years postpartum as well as to explore the history of violence among new mothers in the southwestern region of Sweden. In addition, the aim was to explore the association between domestic violence postpartum and possible risk factors.
This is a longitudinal cohort-study including pregnant women ≥ 18 years of age. Total 1939 pregnant women were recruited to the study and requested to answer three questionnaires (QI-III) during pregnancy and postpartum. Statistical analysis were descriptive statistics, logistic regression and multiple regression with Odds ratios (OR) and 95 % confidence intervals (95 % CI).
The response rate for those who received the Q-III (n = 755) at a Child Welfare Center was almost 97 % (n = 731). When all three questionnaires were answered the prevalence of domestic violence during pregnancy irrespective of type or severity was reported by 2.5 % (n = 40/1573). At 1 to 1.5 years postpartum the prevalence of domestic violence had increased to 3.3 % (n = 23/697). The incidence was 14 per 1000 women during pregnancy and 17.2 per 1000 women postpartum. The strongest risk factor for domestic violence reported at1-1.5 years postpartum was a history of violence whereby all of the women (n = 23) who had revealed their exposure to domestic violence postpartum also reported a history of violence (p < 0.001). Being single/living apart gave a 12.9 times higher risk for domestic violence postpartum (AOR 12.9; 95 % CI: 4.5-37.1). Having several symptoms of depression and a low score on the SOC-scale gave a 3.5 and 3.0 times higher risk respectively (AOR 3.5; 95 % CI: 1.2-10.4) and (AOR 3.0; 95 % CI 1.1-8.3). CONCLUSION
Domestic violence increases as the pregnancy develops and postpartum. A history of violence and being single/living apart may be strong indicators for domestic violence during pregnancy as well as postpartum. Also, having symptoms of depression are associated with domestic violence both during pregnancy and postpartum. Collaboration between health care providers at Antenatal and Welfare centres is essential.