Racial/Ethnic Differences in Women's Experiences of Reproductive Coercion, Intimate Partner Violence, and Unintended Pregnancy

Charvonne N. Holliday, Heather L. McCauley, Jay G. Silverman, Edmund Ricci, Michele R. Decker, Daniel J Tancredi, Jessica G. Burke, Patricia Documét, Sonya Borrero, Elizabeth Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Objective: To explore racial/ethnic differences in reproductive coercion (RC), intimate partner violence (IPV), and unintended pregnancy (UIP). Materials and Methods: We analyzed cross-sectional, baseline data from an intervention that was conducted between August 2008 and March 2009 in five family planning clinics in the San Francisco, California area, to examine the association of race/ethnicity with RC, IPV, and UIP among female patients aged 16-29 (n = 1234). Results: RC was significantly associated with race/ethnicity, p < 0.001, [prevalence estimates: Black (37.1%), multiracial (29.2%), White (18.0%), Hispanic/Latina (24.0%), and Asian/Pacific Islander/other (API/other) (18.4%)]. Race/ethnicity was not associated with IPV. UIP was more prevalent among Black (50.3%) and multiracial (47.2%) women, with an overall range of 37.1%-50.3% among all racial/ethnic groups (p < 0.001). In adjusted analyses, factors associated with UIP were RC [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 1.59, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) = 1.26-2.01] and Black (AOR = 1.63, 95% CI = 1.02-2.60) and API/other (AOR = 1.41, 95% CI = 1.15-1.73) race/ethnicity, which remained significant in the presence of RC. Race-stratified models revealed that RC increased odds of UIP for White (AOR = 2.06, 95% CI = 1.45-2.93) and Black women (AOR = 1.72, 95% CI = 1.14-2.60). Conclusions: Black and multiracial women seeking care in family planning clinics have a disproportionately high prevalence of RC and UIP. RC may partially explain differences in UIP prevalence, with the effect of race/ethnicity slightly attenuated in RC-adjusted models. However, the impact of RC on risk for UIP was similar for White and Black women. Findings from this study support the need to understand and prevent RC, particularly among women of color. Results are foundational in understanding disparities in RC and UIP that may have implications for refinement of clinical care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)828-835
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Women's Health
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017


  • health disparities
  • Intimate partner violence
  • race/ethnicity
  • reproductive coercion
  • unintended pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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