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African Health Sciences
Makerere University Medical School
ISSN: 1680-6905
EISSN: 1680-6905
Vol. 15, No. 2, 2015, pp. 560-567
Bioline Code: hs15077
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

African Health Sciences, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2015, pp. 560-567

 en Gender preferences among antenatal women: a cross-sectional study from coastal South India
Nithin, Kumar; Tanuj, Kanchan; Unnikrishnan, Bhaskaran; Rekha, T.; Prasanna, Mithra; Vaman, Kulkarni; Ramesh, Holla; Darshan, Bhagwan & Samskruthi, Reddy


Background: A balanced sex ratio is essential for a stable society.
Objective: The main objective of the present research was to study the perceptions of women attending the antenatal care (ANC) facility regarding their gender preferences and family composition.
Method: In this cross-sectional study 132 antenatal women were interviewed in their preferred language using a predesigned semi-structured questionnaire. The collected information was analyzed using SPSS version 11.5.
Results: The mean age of the study participants was 27.2 ± 4.1 years. The majority of the antenatal women (60.6%, n=80) did not have any gender preferences. Among those who had a gender preference (39.4%, n=52), male and female preference was reported by 55.7% (n=29) and 44.3% (n=23) of the participants respectively. The overall son preference index was observed to be 1.3. No consistent relationship could be established between the socio-demographic factors and the preference for gender. The mean preferred family size in our study was 1.85±0.531 and more than half of the participants had a balanced gender preference. The majority of the participants were aware that the adverse sex ratio can lead to fall in the number of brides and that it would bring about a social imbalance.
Conclusion: As a developed society we need to ensure that both the genders get equal respect and are free from any sort of preferences and prejudices. To achieve this, more and more people need to be made aware of the consequences of gender imbalance and adverse sex ratio in a society.

Gender preferences; family composition; antenatal women; coastal South India

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