Dokuz Eylul University, Turkey
Title: Investigating university students knowledge levels about infertility
Biography: Digdem Muge Siyez
Statement of the Problem: Infertility is a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse. Infertility is more pervasive in developing countries than developed countries. It is observed that studies on the level of knowledge about infertility in Turkey are very limited and these studies were carried out in small samples. The aim of this research was to examine the knowledge levels of university students on infertility.
Methodology & Theoretical Orientation: Participants were 9693 Bachelor’s students (51.6% female, 48.4% male) from 21 universities in Turkey. The data was collected via Infertility Knowledge Test which is developed by the researchers. The responses to the Infertility Knowledge Test, which consists of 33 items, are marked as "true", "false" and "do not know".
Findings: An important finding obtained from this study was 68.4% of the respondents knew that women’s fertility potential decreased after age 40 compared to 20 years old, while 10% of the participants knew that sperm quality in men deteriorated with age and 23.6% of the participants knew that age was a determining factor in male infertility. The majority of participants knew that smoking, drugs and exposure to heavy chemicals could cause infertility. More than half of the participants didn’t know that timing of sexual intercourse and being extremely weak could cause infertility.
Conclusion & Significance: It can be said that the participants' knowledge level about infertility was low and participants were not aware of some of the preventable risk factors related to infertility. For this reason, it is recommended that awareness raising activities should be undertaken.