Anjum Shahid, Sadia Nasim, Ashfaq Ahmed Memon, Muhammad Ayaz Mustafa.
Adolescent's perspective on reproductive health: a study from Karachi.
Pak J Med Res Jan ;51(2):46-51.
Objectives: To determine the existing knowledge, attitude and behavior about reproductive and sexual health in adolescents of Karachi and seek their opinion about reproductive health education. Study type, settings and duration: A cross sectional study was conducted on adolescents (17-19 years) of both gender studying in colleges of Karachi during 2010. Subjects and Methods: Using stratified sampling procedure, a cross sectional study was carried out. After informed consent and ensuring confidentiality an anonymous quantitative questionnaire was completed to ascertain the knowledge of adolescents on reproductive health. Results: A total of 912 adolescents (470 males and 442 females) of 12 public and private sector colleges of Karachi participated in the study. Acquaintance to reproductive health was present in 75% males and 71% females and most participants confirmed discussing reproductive health issues with friends. About 81% males and 91 % females affirmed for a need for enhanced reproductive health education and awareness while over 50% of the respondents were of the opinion that the right age for reproductive health education was 16 to 18 years. Confining sexual activity to one partner and avoiding exposure to blood and needles for the prevention of AIDS was known to 38% males and 44% females but the prevention of sexually transmitted infections using condoms, was known to only 1/3rd of the respondents. Although 70% of the respondents of both genders knew that pregnancy can be avoided but only 20% knew about contraceptives. Conclusions: Most adolescents’ knew about the reproductive cycle but were not well aware of how to avoid exposures to sexually transmitted infections and pregnancies. Policy message: Reproductive health education is insufficient in adolescents should be gender specific and socio culturally sensitive.
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