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Episiotomy Practice and its Associated Factors among Mothers who Gave Birth Vaginally at Public Health Institutions of Shire Town, Northern Ethiopia

Kidane Niguse, Gebreamlak Gidey, Haftom Gebrehiwot, Mebrahtu Abay, Darie Getachew, Temesgen Worku


Obstetric perineal trauma is assumed to be a serious health problem for women as well as for their child during their childbirth. Episiotomy is the commonest obstetric surgical operation performed to increase the diameter of the vulvas outlet during the late period of the second stage of labor in order to facilitate vaginal delivery. The rate of episiotomy is on the decline in developed countries but still remains high in developing countries. Though practice of episiotomy has become common problem among mothers who delivered vaginally in Ethiopia, studies are limited to show the extent of the problem. The objective of the study was to assess the prevalence of episiotomy practice and associated factors among laboring women in public health institutions of Shire town, Ethiopia. Institution-based cross-sectional study design was conducted among 407 laboring mothers from May to August, 2014 in 3 health institutions of Shire town, Ethiopia. Systematic random sampling technique was used to select study participants and data were entered and cleaned using Epi-info version 7, and was analyzed using SPSS window version 20 software. Both bivariate and multivariate analysis with 95% CI was applied to avoid any confounding variables. Finally, the results were presented in texts, tables and graphs. Among the study participants, episiotomy was performed for 144 (35.4%) mothers. Age group 15–20 years [AOR=3.53 (95% CI 1.059, 12.786)] and 21–34 years [AOR=3.46 (95% CI =(1.24, 9.637)], primipara [AOR= 2.12 (95% CI=(1.146, 3.935)], history of gestational hypertension [AOR=2.59 (95% CI=(1.0499, 6.377)], post-term [AOR=2.35 (95% CI=(1.088, 5.076)], and use of oxytocin [AOR=2.19 (95% CI=(1.195, 4.010)] were factors significantly associated with episiotomy practice. The prevalence of episiotomy practice in this study was relatively high (35.4%) as compared to the recommended practice by the World Health Organization (10%). Parity, gestational age, and use of oxytocin drug were the variables that had influenced the practice level of episiotomy. Thus, periodic on-job training regarding the indication of episiotomy should be provided to all the obstetric care providers and more efforts should be made to reduce the rate of episiotomy in order to improve the well-being and quality of life of woman as well.

Keywords: Episiotomy, vaginal delivery, Shire, public health institution

Cite this Article

Niguse K, Gidey G, Gebrehiwot H,et al. Episiotomy Practice and its Associated Factors among Mothers who Gave Birth Vaginally at Public Health Institutions of Shire Town, Northern Ethiopia. Research & Reviews: Journal of Health Professions. 2016; 6(1): 15–21p.

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