Objectives: The violence observed before pregnancy seems to continue and even flare-up during pregnancy with reported prevalence as high as 33.3%. This study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of domestic violence among pregnant women applying to a hospital. Methods: The study was conducted at the Nenehatun Gynecology and Obstetrics Hospital in Erzurum between September 2017 and February 2018 in a cross-sectional plan. Participants of the study consisted of pregnant women, who applied for regular elective follow-up visits. Consecutive women visiting the department of obstetrics during the study period (n=580) constituted the study population. Women who already participated in the survey, emergency applications, and applications during night shifts (n=169) were excluded. Results: Results for 375 women were analyzed. More than half of the respondents (50.4%, n=189) had experienced violence during pregnancy. Verbal abuse was present in all violated women; none of the participants reported sexual violence. 10.7% (n=40) reported physical violence. 115 women (n=30.7) reported of having some sort of violence also before the pregnancy. In 81% of cases (n=153), the perpetrator was the spouse. None of the victims applied to the authorities. Higher educational status had a 12.8-fold decreasing effect on domestic violence risk. Conclusion: Domestic violence among pregnant women in Eastern Turkey is still high. Efforts should continue to empower women, even implementing a positive discriminatory approach concerning women education and targeting the perpetrators to stop the violence. Abusers should receive a clear message that there is zero tolerance for domestic violence in the community. Keywords: Domestic, pregnancy, spouse abuse, violence
Corresponding Author: Bilge Yerli E.