University of Limerick
Elmusharaf_2017_qualitative.pdf (325.27 kB)

A qualitative study exploring women’s experiences of unsafe abortion in Sudan

Download (325.27 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2017-03-20, 11:20 authored by Wafa Elamin, Atif B. Fazari, Khalifa ElmusharafKhalifa Elmusharaf
Background: Unsafe abortions contribute significantly to maternal morbidity and mortality. They are found more frequently in developing countries such as Sudan where abortion laws are restrictive and women have poor access to contraceptives. Gaps in the knowledge exist regarding women’s decision making process to perform an unsafe abortion in Sudan. Understanding these factors is vital for planning and implementing family planning services. The aim of the research was to explore the experience of women exposed to an unsafe abortion in Khartoum—Sudan, and to address the underlying factors that affected women’s decision to seek an unsafe abortion. Design: A descriptive qualitative approach was adopted using in-depth semi-structured interviews with women who had undergone unsafe abortions. Interviews were translated from Arabic; and data were analysed using a thematic approach. Setting and Participants: Participants were recruited from 2 settings: New Omdurman Hospital and Academy Teaching Hospital in Sudan. A convenience sample of women was used in the study. Results: Three core themes emerged: 1) There was an unbalanced relationship dynamic between women and their partners, which affected their use of contraceptives. 2) Maintaining secrecy of the unintended pregnancy and the unsafe abortion was paramount to all women for fear of social stigma. 3) Women tried to internalize and understand their negative experiences of unsafe abortion through religious context. Conclusion: Unsafe abortions have a significant impact on the quality of women’s lives in Sudan. Open dialogue between men and women regarding family planning strategies; community education about the hazardous consequences of unsafe abortion as well as facilitating access to contraceptives and stressing their proper use are necessary steps to decrease the number of unsafe abortions in Sudan. More research is needed to fill the gaps in knowledge regarding unsafe abortions and sexual health among Sudanese women.



Open Journal of Social Sciences;5, pp. 149-158


Scientific Research of Publishing





Usage metrics

    University of Limerick


    No categories selected


    Ref. manager