DETERMINANCE OF INDUCED ABORTION AMONG UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS (A Study Of University Of Calabar, Cross River State Nigeria)
Abortion is a wide issue and the major concern in most of the discussion on abortion draws heavily from the fact that abortion constitutes severe danger to a woman’s health but at the same time when performed by medical specialist (i.e. abortion specialist) is safe for the woman. Abortion is accepted and also rejected by different societies and people indulge in abortion for a lot of reasons. some indulge in abortion so that they can complete their education, some because of the fear of having a child outside wedlock while others indulge in abortion to avoid be labelled by the society as “loose”. The cross-sectional survey is the one adopted in this study and the sample size of this study is one hundred and seventy (170) possible respondents. The questionnaire was used for the collection of primary data. This study is divided into five (5) chapters, the first chapter is the introduction, the second chapter is the literature review, the third chapter is the methodology, the fourth chapter is the data presentation and data analysis and the fifth chapter is the summary, conclusion and recommendation. This study seeks to identify those factors that tend to induce abortion among female university students with focus on the University of Calabar. This study is beneficial to all categories of women, female students and the society at large. This study also identifies how abortion affects the society at large.
TABLE OF CONTENT
Table of content—————————————————- –vi
List of tables————————————————————x
1.1 Background to the Study———————————–1
1.2 Statement of the Problem———————————-4
1.3 Research questions—————————————–7
1.4 Objective of the study—————————————7
1.5 Significance of the study———————————-8
1.6 Definition of terms——————————————-9
2.1 History and origin of abortion——————————-10
2.2 Forms and nature of Abortion——————————-11
2.3 Methods and risk of abortion——————————–12
2.4 Factors contributing to abortion—————————-13
2.5 Society, socio-cultural factors and abortion————-15
2.6 Review of related theories———————————–16
2.7 Theoretical framework—————————————-23
2.8 Study Hypotheses———————————————-24
3.1 Research Design———————————————-26
3.2 Study Area——————————————————-27
3.3 Population of the study————————————–27
3.4 Sample Size—————————————————–27
3.5 Sampling Technique——————————————-28
3.6 Instruments for Data collection—————————-28
3.7 Methods of Data Analysis————————————28
DATA PRESENTATION AND DATA ANALYSIS
4.1 Socio demographic characteristics of the
respondents (uni-variate analysis)————————-30
4.2 Characteristics in the general knowledge of abortion -37
4.3 Characteristics on reasons or causes of abortion——–44
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
LIST OF TABLES
Table 4.1: Distribution of Questionnaire——————————-29
Table 4.2: Percentage distribution of respondents by age——–30
Table 4.3: Percentage distribution of respondents by sex——–31
Table 4.4: Percentage distribution of respondents by religion—32
Table 4.5: Percentage distribution of respondents by
Table 4.6: Percentage distribution of respondents by
Table 4.7:Percentage distribution of respondents by faculty——35
Table 4.8:Percentage distribution of respondents by their level–36
Table 4.9: Percentage distribution of respondents by methods
Of abortion they are aware of———————————37
Table 4.10: Percentage distribution of respondents by whether
they support abortion among students——————-38
Table 4.11: Percentage distribution of respondents who
Supported abortion by which abortion method
Table 4.12: Percentage distribution of female respondents
on whether they have ever been pregnant————-40
Table 4.13: Percentage distribution of male respondents
on whether they gave ever gotten a girl pregnant—–41
Table 4.14: Percentage distribution of respondents on
whether they have been directly or indirectly
involved in abortion procurement———————–42
Table 4.15: Percentage distribution of respondents by
whether they would recommend abortion to
other students or anyone———————————-43
Table 4.16: Percentage distribution of respondents
on whether they think students procure
Table 4.17: Percentage distribution of respondents
on whether they believe that female
students who get pregnant unexpectedly
would terminate their pregnancy in order
to complete their education——————————45
Table 14.8: Percentage distribution of respondents
by whether they believe that stigma associated
with carrying unwanted pregnancy encourages
individuals to terminate it———————————46
Table 4.23: Distribution of respondents by their
response what ground they would procure an
abortion i.e. medical, economic or educational
(Reference Question 24 and 17)———————-47
Table 4.24: Distribution of respondents by sex on
whether stigma associated with unwanted
pregnancy can lead individuals to terminate
the pregnancy(Reference Question 26 and 3)——50
Table 4.25: Distribution of Respondents by Age on whether
fear of becoming a mother at a tender age
leads to the desire to terminate unwanted
pregnancy.( Reference Question 27 and 4) ——–53
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Abortion is the termination of a pregnancy associated with the death and expulsion of a fetus from a uterus before it reaches the stage of viability. An abortion may occur spontaneously, in normal parlance it is called a miscarriage, or it may be brought on purposefully in which case it is often called an induced abortion (www.britannica.com).
The issue of abortion has attracted substantial attention in recent times in Nigeria and everywhere in the world; abortion has therefore become a global issue (Alimson, 2001). The major concern in most of the discussions on abortion and related situation draws heavily from the fact that abortion constitutes severe danger to a woman’s health, but at the same time when performed by medical specialist (i.e abortion specialists) abortions are safe for the woman, and relatively simple. Religious institutions are against the abortion process as they believe abortion is a process of committing murder and murderer are seen as sinners (Knight, 2003) Whey the society frowns at it is because of the inherent fact that if the phenomenon is
not regulated it would impact negatively on the population growth and also on the welfare of women (Barreto, 1992).
Abortion is therefore forbidden in many societies especially the traditional ones. The “abrupt removal” or premature termination of babies are said to be as a result of certain factors.
Most societies therefore recognize the importance of medical factors in pregnancy termination. According to the Oxford medical Dictionary, induced abortion can be performed for reasons that fall into four general categories.
i. To preserve the life or physical or mental well-being of the mother.
ii. To prevent the completion of a pregnancy that has resulted from rape or incest.
iii. To prevent the birth of a child with serious deformity or genetic abnormality.
iv. To prevent a birth because of the age of a women, therefore, a girl whose body has not formed property for child birth, or a
woman who has passed her child bearing age, as it could be dangerous for the two.
Abortions that are performed to preserve the well-being of the female or in case of rape or incest are therapeutic or justifiable abortions. Induced abortion is accepted on some countries but in other countries it is highly forbidden.
However, other factors (economic social, educational, and family size) have equally become prominent in respect to abortion or pregnancy termination. Both male and female students are supposed to be sexually responsible since a lot of student’s in today’s society are already sexually active, but females always carry the bulk of the responsibility as they are the ones who would be greatly affected by any mistake (Alimson, 2001). For instance, a female student who forget to take necessary pregnancy precautions and therefore gets pregnant may resort to an abortion for the following reasons.
i. To complete her education,
ii. ii. To avoid becoming a mother prematurely, as well as the responsibility attached to it,
iii. To avoid being negatively labelled by the society has been “loose”
iv. Fear of having a child out of wedlock. (Almison, 2001:3).
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
If an investigation or a study is carried out on the category of people that indulge in abortion, the result will definitely prove that it is adolescents and youths. The minority will be older people (especially those who have passed the age of child bearing.).
Several causes have been identified as inducing abortion other than medical. The phenomenon in most countries is frowned at. In Nigeria for example the abortion Act of 1967 as amended I n 1982 states the following;
1. If the continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk to the life of the pregnant woman greater than if the pregnancy was terminated, the pregnancy should be terminated.
2. If the termination is necessary to prevent grave permanent impurity to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman, it should be terminated.
3. If the pregnancy has not exceeded its 24th week and the continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk greater than if the pregnancy were terminated of injury to the physical of mental health of the existing children of the family of the pregnant woman, it should be terminated.
4. If there is substantial risk that if the child were born it would suffer from much physical or mental abnormality as to be serious by handicapped, the pregnancy should be terminated (George, 2004:7).
The above Act therefore permits under certain conditions, the abortion of a pregnancy. Most women we the following conditions to involve in abortion which has negative effect.
Mindful of the social stigma of having unwanted pregnancies, many young girls who become pregnant seek abortion as the only way to end unwanted pregnancies. This however, has serious health risks,
which sometime leads to death to young girls. For instance, unsafe abortion results in various complications such as haemorrhage, perforation of the uterus, secondary sterify and even death. It is also obvious that unsafe abortion has a devastating health impact as measured by deaths, illnesses, injuries and the cases of emergency care (Expanding Access to safe Abortion, 1993).
Beside the risks of unsafe abortion, there are serious health risks involved child bearing as an adolescent or teenager. For instance, teenagers face greater risk of pelvic bone immaturity, prolonged labour and other wise difficult birth.
The fear of been sent out of School or dropping out of school because of unwanted pregnancy makes undergraduate students involve in abortion and in order to abort the baby, they go to quack doctors because it is cheap or they take concoctions and this either kills them or destroys their womb. Money in this case is also a problem.
George (2004) has clearly observed that about 72.5% of those involved in abortion are female students, 17.5% are unmarried
women, while abort 4.3% are housewives. It is this rate that has become a problem.
Therefore, this study seeks to look at extent of determinant of induced abortion among undergraduate students, by looking at the reason why people involve in abortion and why it is still being patronized by members of the society.