The prevalence of sexual dysfunctions in pregnant women and the correlated factors: a systematic review and meta-analysis
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CitationThe prevalence of sexual dysfunctions in pregnant women and the correlated factors: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Background: Sexual functions are negatively affected during pregnancy with the emergence of physical, hormonal, mental, emotional, and behavioral changes; however, there is no cumulative knowledge about the global prevalence of sexual dysfunction (SD) in pregnant women and the correlated factors in SD. Aim: The study aimed to determine the prevalence of SD among pregnant women and the factors correlated with their SD scores. Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis of studies focusing on SD in pregnant women were conducted in the PubMed, EBSCOhost, Web of Science, Turkish Medline, Scopus, Google Scholar, and Ovid databases by using the following combination of keywords: "pregnant" OR "pregnancy" AND "sexual dysfunction." Outcomes: Nearly 70% of pregnant women were at risk for SD. The age of the pregnant woman, the spouse's age, and the duration of marriage were negatively correlated with the SD score, while the education level was positively correlated with it. Results: Initially, 5644 studies were identified: 693 studies were evaluated for eligibility and 668 were removed following the exclusion criteria. A total of 25 studies involving 6871 pregnant women were included in the meta-analysis. The pooled SD prevalence in pregnant women was 69.7% (95% CI, 59.9%-77.9%). Clinical implications: The results of this study can be used in the organization of prenatal care, especially for pregnant women at high risk for SD. Strengths and limitations: This meta-analysis is the first to reveal the global prevalence of SD and the factors correlated with SD scores in pregnant women. The most important limitation of this study is that it analyzes documents showing pregnant women at risk for SD according to an unconfirmed measurement tool for pregnant women. Conclusion: Most pregnant women experience SD symptoms. More research is needed, specifically on validated tools that assess pregnancy-specific SD symptoms.