Intimate Partner Violence in the Middle East Region: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Mozhgan Moshtagh, Rana Amiri, Simin Sharafi, Morteza Arab-Zozani*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background and Objective: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a clinical and social problem globally, especially in the Middle East. This study aimed to analyze the prevalence of IPV and its types against women in the Middle East region. Method: PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science were searched in January 2020. From 1995 to 2020, all studies performed in the Middle East, investigating at least one type of abuse against women and written in English, entered the study. All included studies were appraised using Joanna Briggs Institute Checklist, which was adapted for prevalence studies. The random effect model of meta-analysis was performed using the Mantel–Haenszel method by comprehensive meta-analysis software. Each type of abuse as event rate with 95% CI was calculated for each variable. Heterogeneity was investigated using the I 2 statistic test. Results: Fifty-five studies encompassing 138,692 participants were included in our meta-analysis. The rate of overall abuse was 26.3 ( n = 55, 95% CI: [15.8, 40.5], p = .002). The highest rate of abuse in the included studies was reported for psychological abuse 48.6% ( n = 46, 95% CI: [39.8, 57.5], p = .758). The rate of abuse for physical, economical, sexual, and injury were 28.4% ( n = 53, 95% CI: [22.1, 35.7], p = .0001), 19% ( n = 10, 95% CI: [9.8, 33.7], p = .0001), 18.5% ( n = 45, 95% CI: [13.6, 24.6], p = .0001), and 18.4% ( n = 5, 95% CI: [7.1, 40.2], p = 0.008), respectively. The overall abuse reported by World Health Organization Multi-Country Domestic Violence (DV)Questionnaire was 25.7% ( n = 17, 95% CI: [18.4, 34.7], p = .0001). This value was 41.8% ( n = 11, 95% CI: [29.7, 55], p = .223) for the Conflict Tactics Scale Questionnaire. Conclusion: Although this review highlights the lack of or insufficient IPV data in some contexts and inconsistencies in defining and measuring IPV among studies, the evidence shows that a moderate to high pattern of abuse has been observed in the study population. Due to this region’s unique cultural-religious characteristics, it is urgent to reduce this phenomenon.
Original languageEnglish
Article number152483802110360
Number of pages19
JournalTrauma, Violence, and Abuse
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Aug 2021
Externally publishedYes


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