|dc.description.abstract||Background: In Saudi Arabia, women‘s sexual and reproductive health (SRH) is an area, which is usually linked with morality, tradition and religion. This can influence the provision of SRH education or services. Little is known about the knowledge, needs, attitudes or practices of Saudi women in relation to their SRH. Furthermore, earlier studies from other Arab countries had failed to consider married and single women separately. This exploratory study aimed to provide the basis for further research on the SRH of Saudi women, both single and married.
Study design: A cross-sectional questionnaire study was conducted, using a translated and piloted anonymous questionnaire in 2013-14. Participants were female students, single and married, at universities in the city of Riyadh. Ethical approvals were granted in Riyadh and the UK.
Result: Three hundred and sixty-five students from four of the 13 universities in Riyadh (two governmental and two private) completed questionnaires. SRH knowledge varied widely among participants, with many holding serious misconceptions. 84.1% had a poor general SRH knowledge where single students were more likely to have low knowledge than married ones. While the level of knowledge for married students was higher than among the singles and a poor level of STI knowledge was found to be more among students at private universities, undergraduate and who‘s never been married before. Age, marital status, level of study, type of university and having watched films or seen photographs depicting sexual activities were predictors of knowledge level.
Discussion: This study provides, for the first time, fundamental information concerning Saudi female students‘ SRH knowledge and information-seeking behaviour its contributed to knowledge for the first time by looking into single and married women. These findings reveal the limited understanding of the SRH needs and problems of this particular group.||