Frewoini Tesfay Eyasu Mesfin Abel Gedefaw



Background:   Data on postpartum sexual resumption is limited in Ethiopia.

Objective: To determine the timing of postpartum sexual resumption, use of modern contraceptive and sexual morbidity associated with resumption among in -union women in Addis Ababa.


A facility based cross-sectional study was conducted from March 24 - August 04, 2014 at ten health centres of Addis Ababa involving 424 postpartum in–union women. Data were collected at 14th weeks of postpartum. The SPSS version 16.0 was used for data entry and analysis. Descriptive statics were done to determine the timing of sexual resumption, postpartum sexual morbidity and proportion of contraceptive use. Logistic regression analysis was fitted and odds ratios with 95% CI were computed to identify factors associated with contraceptive use while sexual resumption.

Result: More than three quarters (78.3%) resumed sexual intercourse within 14 weeks of postpartum. The mean and median time of sexual resumption was 6.4 weeks (±2.3) and 6 weeks respectively. Among those resumed sexual intercourse, three fourths (76.2%) were used modern contraceptives. The odds of contraceptive use while resuming sexual intercourse was determined by whether the index pregnancy was planned or not and resumption of menses. One fourth (26.15%) of women who resumed sexual intercourse had postpartum sexual morbidity and only 15% of them had sought medical care. Only 11% of the participants had ever been advised about postpartum sexual activity by a health care provider.

Conclusions: High number of postpartum women resumed sexual intercourse despite one in ten women resumed without contraceptive use. It was also a associated with high postpartum sexual morbidity, low health seeking behavior and low postpartum sexuality counseling practice by health care providers. Strategies need to be developed to address the identified problems.

Key words: postpartum, Sexual resumption, Contraceptive use, Ethiopia

(Ethiopian Journal of Reproductive Health 2018;10:22-33)




Original Articles