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Levels and Determinants of Gynecological Morbidity in a District of South India

Jagdish C. Bhatia, John Cleland, Leela Bhagavan and N. S. N. Rao
Studies in Family Planning
Vol. 28, No. 2 (Jun., 1997), pp. 95-103
Published by: Population Council
DOI: 10.2307/2138112
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2138112
Page Count: 9
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Abstract

This article presents the results of an assessment of gynecological morbidity among 385 women with young children residing in a district of Karnataka State, South India. All three main modes of assessment (clinical examination, laboratory tests, and self-reports) reveal a high burden of reproductive tract infections. The two most common conditions, identified by laboratory tests, were bacterial vaginosis and mucopurulent cervicitis. Approximately one-fourth of the women had clinical evidence of pelvic inflammatory disease, cervical ectopy, and fistula. The contribution of sexually transmitted diseases to overall gynecological morbidity appears to be relatively modest; 10 percent were so diagnosed. Associated conditions of anemia and chronic energy deficiency were common. Severe anemia was found in 17 percent of cases and severe chronic energy deficiency in 12 percent. These results indicate that radical improvements in women's health in India will require far more than the diagnosis and treatment of reproductive tract infections.

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