Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 307–318 | Cite as

The Effects of Intimate Partner Violence Before, During, and After Pregnancy in Nurse Visited First Time Mothers

  • Philip V. ScribanoEmail author
  • Jack Stevens
  • Elly Kaizar
  • NFP-IPV Research Team


To determine the prevalence of intimate partner violence (IPV) before, during and after pregnancy in a national sample of women enrolled in the Nurse Family Partnership (NFP); and, to determine correlates of IPV exposure. Clients enrolled in the NFP between 2002 and 2005 were selected. Data were extracted from NFP client encounter forms including demographic, health habits, family and relationships, and maternal and infant health information. IPV was measured by self-report and assessed during three time periods: 12 months prior to enrollment into the NFP program; during pregnancy up to 36 weeks; and, 12 months since the infant’s birth. Multiple imputation methods were used to account for missing data; univariate, and multivariate analyses were conducted to determine characteristics of IPV exposure over time. IPV in the 12 months prior to pregnancy and at NFP enrollment was 8.1% (95% CI: 5.8–11.2%); 4.7% (4.3.0–5.1%) of women reported IPV during the first 36 weeks of their pregnancy; and, 12.4% (8.5–17.6%) of women reported IPV in the 12 months following delivery. Several IPV correlates were noted, including relationship status (having a partner before and after pregnancy, p < 0.001, p = 0.023, respectively), and maternal health and habits such as smoking (before, during and after pregnancy, p < 0.001, p < 0.001, p = 0.001, respectively). In longitudinal follow-up, reduced use of contraception following the birth of her infant, and rapid repeat pregnancy were significantly associated with IPV exposure. For NFP visited mothers, IPV prevalence is lowest during pregnancy, compared to periods before and after pregnancy. IPV had no demonstrable effect on perinatal outcomes such as gestational age, and birth weight; however, IPV was associated with lower rates of contraceptive use and higher rates of rapid repeat pregnancy in longitudinal follow-up.


Pregnancy Intimate partner violence Home visitation Nurse 



The NFP IPV Research Team includes the following additional individuals: Jeff Coben, West Virginia University; Pilar Baca, Francesca Pinto, Ruth O’Brien, Mariarosa Gasbarro, and David Olds, University of Colorado; Marilyn Ford-Gilboe and Nadine Wathen, University of Western Ontario, Harriet MacMillan, Susan Jack, McMaster University; and, Diane McNaughton, Rush University. This research was supported in part by a grant 5R49CE001170 from the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, CDC. Contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not represent official views of the CDC. We thank Ellen Jameson for her assistance in the initial data management.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip V. Scribano
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jack Stevens
    • 2
    • 3
  • Elly Kaizar
    • 3
  • NFP-IPV Research Team
  1. 1.Department of Pediatrics, The Children’s Hospital of PhiladelphiaUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Department of PediatricsNationwide Children’s HospitalColumbusUSA
  3. 3.The Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

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