The Relationship of Health literacy with Preventive Behaviors of Urinary Tract Infection in Pregnant Women

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Health Education and Health Promotion, Faculty of Health, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences,

2 Department of Health Education and Health Promotion, Faculty of Health, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

3 Department of Biostatistics, School of Health, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

4 Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.


Background and Objective: Urinary tract infection (UTI) is the most common medical complication in pregnant women and is associated with serious consequences for both the fetus and the mother. The role of health literacy in examining adherence to UTI prevention behaviors during pregnancy has not been fully studied and relevant studies report controversial results. This study aimed to investigate the relationship of health literacy with preventive behaviors of urinary tract infection in pregnant women.

Material and Methods: This cross-sectional was conducted on 235 pregnant women in Mashhad, Iran. A multi-stage sampling design was used to select eligible participants, and valid and reliable questionnaires including the Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults (TOFHLA) and research made-preventive behaviors recommendations for urinary tract infection the disease was implemented to collect data. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 22 and Spearman correlation, regression, Mann-Whitney and Kruskal Wallis tests. Significance level was considered lower than 0.05.  
Results: The average health literacy in this survey was 56.10±16.23 and ranged from 30.24-89.45. In this study, 83.6% of pregnant women showed marginal or inadequate levels of health literacy. there is a statistically significant correlation (P=0.001, r=0.959) between health literacy and prevention behaviors. Health literacy significantly correlated (P=0.001) with all aspects of prevention behaviors toward urinary tract infection.

Conclusion: Health literacy could be considered as a stronger predictor of preventive behavior toward urinary tract infection. Focusing on designing and implementing educational programs to promote the health literacy skills of pregnant mothers could be very beneficial to facilitate a healthy lifestyle in this.


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