Document Type



Community Health Sciences



To explore the experiences of social consequences among women suffering from secondary infertility.


Descriptive case series of 400 women with secondary infertility attending tertiary care hospitals in Karachi, Pakistan.


More than two thirds (67.7%) of women stated that their inability to give live births or give birth to sons had resulted in marital dissonance. The respondents had been threatened for divorce (20%), husband's remarrying (38%) or to be returned to their parent's home (26%) by their in laws or husbands. Majority (68%) of the women threatened did not have any live births. However, those who had live births (32%) had a girl child only followed by difficulty in conceiving again. Secondary infertility was described as a cause of violence against infertile women. The women reported that they were being physically and verbally abused by husbands (10.5%) and in-laws (16.3%) for being infertile. Nearly 70% of women facing physical abuse and 60% of the women facing verbal abuse suffered severe mental stress.


The experience of infertility is a stressful condition itself. This becomes particularly traumatic with previous pregnancies ending up in abortions, stillbirths and neonatal/infant deaths or the live births being daughters only. However, it subjects the woman to contempt and exploitation resulting in severe psychological.


JPMA. The Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association