This paper reviewed the abuse of infertile women suffering from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) from a gender perspective. Infertility is a prevalent, presenting feature of PCOS with 75% of women experiencing infertility due to anovulation, making PCOS the most common cause of anovulatory infertility. Increased awareness of PCOS, its causes, and its symptoms may help the process of early diagnosis, appropriate care and mitigation of violence arising from infertility hence, this study. In many countries’ infertility among married couples especially for women is a sentence to stigmatization, loss of social status, marital conflicts and violence. All this stems from prevailing socio-cultural norms and gender inequalities inimical to women. PCOS is a syndrome without much public awareness and PCOS patients often do not seek care. Where they seek care, they are often not immediately diagnosed with PCOS. Due to some prevailing cultural norms and general lack of awareness they are often tortured and abused. Outcomes from this study shows that there is need to intensify public awareness on the various factors contributing to infertility such as PCOS which has been identified as a major contributing factor. Also, harmful socio-cultural norms and practices that encourages gender inequalities and violence against infertile women should be eradicated with strong policies put in place and perpetrators severely punished. Early diagnosis and a multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of PCOS is also crucial. Finally, proactiveness by implementing working strategies that will help improve treatment and mitigate violence against women suffering from PCOS should be embrace by all.
ADULOJU, P. O. et al. (2015) Prevalence and predictors of intimate partner violence among women attending infertility clinic in south-western Nigeria. European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology. 188. Pp. 66–69.
AGBONTAEN-EGHAFONA, K. A. & OFOVWE, C. E. (2009) Infertility in Nigeria: A risk factor for gender-based violence. Gender and Behaviour. 7 (2). Pp. 2326–2344.
AKYUZ, A. et al. (2013) Studying the effect of infertility on marital violence in Turkish women. International Journal of Fertility & Sterility. 6 (4). Pp. 286.
AZZIZ, R. (2016) Introduction: Determinants of polycystic ovary syndrome. Fertility and Sterility. 106 (1). Pp. 4–5.
BAYOUH, F. A. (2011) Socio-cultural perceptions of infertility and their implications: a study of women experiencing childlessness in South Gondar, Ethiopia (Master’s thesis, The University of Bergen).
BELLVER, J. et al. (2018) Polycystic ovary syndrome throughout a woman’s life. Journal of Assisted Reproduction And Genetics. 35 (1). Pp. 25–39.
BRADY, C., MOUSA, S. S. & MOUSA, S. A. (2009) Polycystic ovary syndrome and its impact on women’s quality of life: More than just an endocrine disorder. Drug, Healthcare and Patient Safety. Vol. 1. Pp. 9–15.
CHIMBATATA, N. B. & MALIMBA, C. (2016) Infertility in sub-Saharan Africa: a Woman’s issue for how long? A qualitative review of literature. Open Journal of Social Sciences. 4 (8). Pp. 96–102.
COSTELLO, M. et al. (2019) A review of first line infertility treatments and supporting evidence in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Medical Sciences. 7 (9). Pp. 95.
CUTLER, D. (2019) The impact of lifestyle on the reproductive, metabolic, and psychological well-being of women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) (Doctoral dissertation, University of British Columbia).
DAMONE, A. L. et al. (2019) Depression, anxiety and perceived stress in women with and without PCOS: a community-based study. Psychological Medicine. 49 (9). Pp. 1510–1520.
DIERICKX, S. et al. (2018) ‘I am always crying on the inside’: a qualitative study on the implications of infertility on women’s lives in urban Gambia. Reproductive Health. 15 (1). P. 151.
EKA, P. O., SWENDE, T. Z. & HEMBAH-HILEKAAN, S. K. (2019) Domestic Violence among Infertile Women in Makurdi, North-Central Nigeria. Gynecol Reprod Health. 3 (5). Pp. 1–4.
FLEDDERJOHANN, J. J. (2012) ‘Zero is not good for me’: implications of infertility in Ghana. Human Reproduction. 27 (5). Pp. 1383–1390.
HARZIF, A. K., SANTAWI, V. P. A. & WIJAYA, S. (2019) Discrepancy in perception of infertility and attitude towards treatment options: Indonesian urban and rural area. Reproductive Health. 16 (1). P. 126.
HESS, R. F., ROSS, R. & GILILLAND JR, J. L. (2018) Infertility, psychological distress, and coping strategies among women in Mali, West Africa: a mixed-methods study. African Journal of Reproductive Health. 22 (1). Pp. 60–72.
HOLTON, S., HAMMARBERG, K. & JOHNSON, L. (2018) Fertility concerns and related information needs and preferences of women with PCOS. Human Reproduction Open. (4).
IBISOMI, L. & MUDEGE, N. N. (2014) Childlessness in Nigeria: perceptions and acceptability. Culture, Health & Sexuality. 16 (1). Pp. 61–75.Search in Google Scholar
INHORN, M. C. & PATRIZIO, P. (2015) Infertility around the globe: new thinking on gender, reproductive technologies and global movements in the 21st century. Human Reproduction Update. 21 (4). Pp. 411–426.
KAZANDI, M. et al. (2011) The status of depression and anxiety in infertile Turkish couples. Iranian Journal of Reproductive Medicine. 9 (2). P. 99.
KIRTHIKA, S. V. et al. (2019) Polycystic ovarian syndrome-interventions for the emerging public health challenge: A scoping review. Drug Invention Today. 12 (3). Pp. 1–4.
LEVINSON, A. (2019) Raising Awareness and Requesting Funding for PCOS—The #1 Infertility Diagnosis. [Online] Available from: https://www.rmact.com/fertility-blog/raising-awareness-and-requesting-funding-pcos [Accessed: 9 September 2020].
MARIANI, G. et al. (2017) Improving women’s health in low-income and middle-income countries. Part I: challenges and priorities. Nuclear Medicine Communications. 38 (12). P. 1019.
MATTA, R. A. (2017) Apelin-36 and Copeptin Levels in Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 3 (1). P. 3.
MELO, A. S., FERRIANI, R. A. & NAVARRO, P. A. (2015) Treatment of infertility in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: approach to clinical practice. Clinics. 70 (11). Pp. 765–769.
OZGOLI, G. et al. (2016) Evaluation of the prevalence and contributing factors of psychological intimate partner violence in infertile women. Journal of Midwifery and Reproductive Health. 4 (2). Pp. 571–581.
OZTURK, R. et al. (2017) Another face of violence against women: Infertility. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences. 33 (4). P. 909.
PATEL, A. et al. (2018) Sociocultural determinants of infertility stress in patients undergoing fertility treatments. Journal of Human Reproductive Sciences. 11 (2). Pp. 172.
POORNOWROOZ, N. et al. (2019) The Comparison of Violence and Sexual Function between Fertile and Infertile Women: A Study from Iran. Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research. 13 (1).
RAO, M., BROUGHTON, K. S. & LEMIEUX, M. J. (2020) Cross-sectional Study on the Knowledge and Prevalence of PCOS at a Multiethnic University. Progress in Preventive Medicine. 5 (2).
REED, C. K. S. (2010) Intimate partner violence and infertility in Zambia (Doctoral dissertation).
SAMI, N. & ALI, T. S. (2012) Domestic violence against infertile women in Karachi, Pakistan. Asian Review of Social Sciences. 1(1). P. 15.
SANCHEZ, N. (2014) A life course perspective on polycystic ovary syndrome. International Journal of Women’s Health. 6. P. 115.
SHARMA, S. & MISHRA, A. J. (2018) Tabooed disease in alienated bodies: A study of women suffering from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). Clinical Epidemiology and Global Health. 6 (3). Pp. 130–136.
SONI, N. R. (2017) Current Management on PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome)/Stein-Leventhal Syndrome. Invest Gynecol Res Women’s Health. 1 (3).
TABONG, P. T. N. & ADONGO, P. B. (2013) Understanding the social meaning of infertility and childbearing: a qualitative study of the perception of childbearing and childlessness in Northern Ghana. PloS one. 8 (1).
TAN, S. et al. (2008) Psychological implications of infertility in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Human Reproduction. 23 (9). Pp. 2064–2071.
TAZUH, M. M. & TOSAM, J. M. (2016) Being a woman in African culture: How culture shapes and defines the status of women. In: Tosam, J. M. & Takov, P. (eds.) Philosophy in Culture: A Cross-Cultural Perspective. Mankon, Bamenda: Langaa RPCIG. Pp. 241–266.
TEEDE, H. J. et al. (2018) Recommendations from the international evidence-based guideline for the assessment and management of polycystic ovary syndrome. Human Reproduction. 33 (9). Pp. 1602–1618.
WHO (2017) [Online] Available from: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/violence-against-women [Accessed: 9 September 2020].
WOLF, W. M. et al. (2018) Geographical prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome as determined by region and race/ethnicity. International Journal of Environmental Research And Public Health. 15 (11). P. 2589.
WRIGHT, P. J., DAWSON, R. M. & CORBETT, C. F. (2020) Social construction of biopsychosocial and medical experiences of women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Journal of Advanced Nursing. 76 (7). Pp. 1728–1736.
ZANGENEH, F. Z. et al. (2012) Psychological distress in women with polycystic ovary syndrome from Imam Khomeini Hospital, Tehran. Journal of Reproduction & Infertility. 13 (2). P. 111.
Journal of Gender and Power is an Open Access Journal. Copyright of the article published in the Journal of Gender and Power is retained by the authors with first publication rights granted to the Adam Mickiewicz University Press.