A Community Study of Infertility in Northern Tanzania


Principal Investigator:
Ulla Larsen

Department of Global Health and Population

Dates of Research:
September 1, 2001 — January 31, 2005


The long-term objective of this project is to enhance the understanding of infertility in sub-Saharan Africa through an in-depth study of a single local African community. It is important to understand infertility because it is a strong indicator of poor health and can be prevented through the appropriate public health interventions. Infertility can also have serious social consequences, such as ostracism of women which leads to strained gendered relations. By studying a community, this project is able to integrate the biomedical, demographic, and anthropologic analyses of infertility, while integrating knowledge of female, male, and couple factor of infertility. The study comprises of quantitative analyses of survey data and qualitative analysis of interviews. The project estimates the prevalence of infertility, examines the risk factors, describes treatments currently in use, and analyzes the social and demographic implications of infertility.