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Arab Americans, African Americans, and infertility: barriers to reproduction and medical care

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Inhorn, Marcia, and M.H. Fakih. 2006. "Arab Americans, African Americans, and infertility: barriers to reproduction and medical care." Fertility and Sterility, 85(4): 844-852.

Objective: To compare barriers to infertility care among African Americans and Arab Americans.

Design: Qualitative study using semi-structured reproductive histories and open-ended ethnographic interviews.

Setting: Infertile volunteers in a private IVF clinic in Dearborn, Michigan, an Arab American ethnic enclave community in metropolitan Detroit.

Patient(s): Arab American men presenting for infertility diagnosis and treatment, including assisted reproductive technologies. Intervention(S): None.

Main Outcome Measure(s): Perceived barriers to effective infertility care.

Result(s): Arab Americans and African Americans living in metropolitan Detroit are at increased risk of infertility and share similar histories of poverty, racism, and cultural barriers to medical treatment. This study, which focused on infertile Arab American men living in or near Dearborn (an ethnic enclave community composed mainly of recent immigrants and war refugees), revealed significant barriers to effective infertility care, including economic constraints, linguistic and cultural barriers, and social marginalization in mainstream U.S. society, particularly after September 11, 2001.

Conclusion(S): Arab Americans experience disparities in access to infertility care, largely because of poverty and social marginalization in post-September 11th America.

DOI:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2005.10.029 (Full Text)

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