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Title: Experiences of menstrual inequity and health among women and people who menstruate in the Barcelona area (Spain): a qualitative study
Author: Holst, Anna Sofie
Jacques-Aviñó, Constanza
Berenguera, Anna
Pinzón-Sanabria, Diana
Valls-Llobet, Carme
Munrós Feliu, Jordina
Martínez Bueno, Cristina
López-Jiménez, Tomàs
Vicente-Hernández, Ma. Mercedes
Medina Perucha, Laura
Keywords: Cicle menstrual
Igualtat de gènere
Barcelona (Catalunya : Àrea metropolitana)
Menstrual cycle
Gender equality
Barcelona (Catalonia : Metropolitan area)
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: BioMed Central
Abstract: Introduction: Menstrual health and menstrual inequity have been neglected in social, economic, healthcare and political spheres. Although available evidence is scarce, it already suggests a link between experiencing menstrual inequity (which refers to the systematic disparities in accessing menstrual health and education, menstrual products and spaces for menstrual management, among other aspects) and menstrual health outcomes. The aim of this study was to explore experiences of menstrual health and menstrual inequity among women and people who menstruate aged 18-55 in Barcelona and surrounding areas (Spain). Methods: A qualitative study, using a critical feminist perspective, was conducted. Sampling was purposeful and selective. Recruitment was through sexual and reproductive health centres, social media and snowball sampling techniques. Thirty-four semi-structured photo-elicitation interviews were conducted between December 2020 and February 2021. Interviews took place in sexual and reproductive health centres, public spaces, and by telephone. Data were analysed using Reflexive Thematic Analysis. Results: Three themes were identified: 'Systemic neglect of menstruation and the menstrual cycle', 'When 'the private' becomes public: menstrual management' and 'Navigating menstrual health: between medicalization and agency'. Experiences of menstrual inequity appeared to be widespread among participants. They referred to the impact of having to conceal menstruation and the barriers to managing menstruation in public spaces. Choosing menstrual products was often influenced by price and availability; several participants reported menstrual poverty. A general lack of menstrual education was described. Menstrual education was usually gained through personal experience and self-learnings, or through families and friends. Menstruation and the menstrual cycle had a significant impact on participants' day-to-day. Accessing and navigating the healthcare system was challenging, as participants mostly reported feeling dismissed and almost exclusively offered hormonal contraception as a panacea to address menstrual health.
Note: Reproducció del document publicat a:
It is part of: Reproductive Health, 2022, vol. 19, num. 45
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ISSN: 1742-4755
Appears in Collections:Articles publicats en revistes (Infermeria de Salut Pública, Salut mental i Maternoinfantil)

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