Abstract
FASTING BY MUSLIM PREGNANT WOMEN DURING RAMADAN: A CROSS-SECTIONAL SURVEY STUDY

Dr. Rabia Javed*, Dr. Shahana Hoor, Dr. Samina Asghar, Dr. Naima Umar, Dr. Azhar Abbas Shah, Dr. Nargis Hanif, Dr. Maryum Shafiq, Dr. Nishat Shafiq Khan and Mohammad Abdullah Imran

ABSTRACT

Purpose/ Objectives: There is a mixed opinion regarding fasting by pregnant women during Ramadan. This study was carried out to examine the knowledge, beliefs, attitude and practices of pregnant Muslim regarding fasting during the month of Ramadan. Methodology: Using convenient sampling, 200 pregnant women visiting 3 Basic Health Units were targeted in a 1 month (July 2019) observational descriptive cross-sectional survey study. A self-designed questionnaire was used as data collection tool. Data was analysed using SPSS-22. Chi-square test was applied to check the association between different demographic variables and fasting frequency. P-value less than 0.05 was considered significant. Results: The overall response rate was 95% (190/200). 77% fasted during Ramadan, out of which 50% fasted for a duration of 11 to 20 days and 95% considered fasting in pregnancy difficult than othewise.72% consulted a doctor for decision regarding fasting. 94% considered it “Wajib” with 90% being aware of fasting compensation after delivery. 47% perceived ‘feeling of weakness due to lack of nutrition’ as the main risk of fasting. Educational status, presence of co-morbidity, duration of pregnancy and husband’s restriction were positively associated with fasting (p-value <0.05). Conclusion: Fasting by pregnant women during Ramadan is associated with certain variables. There is need for health care providers to assess the pregnant women’s status to decide whether to fast in Ramadan or not and increase their knowledge of health issues related to it.

Keywords: Pregnancy, Ramadan, Fasting.


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