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Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Self-esteem, stress and self-rated health in family planning clinic patients

James E Rohrer1* and Rodney Young2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Family and Community Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, USA

2 Department of Family Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center-Amarillo, USA

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BMC Family Practice 2004, 5:11  doi:10.1186/1471-2296-5-11

Published: 3 June 2004



The independent effects of stress on the health of primary care patients might be different for different types of clinic populations. This study examines these relationships in a low-income female population of patients attending a family planning clinic.


This study investigated the relevance of different sources of personal stress and social support to self-rated health, adjusting for mental health, health behavior and demographic characteristics of subjects. Five hundred women who attended family planning clinics were surveyed and 345 completed the form for a response rate of 72 percent.


Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that liking oneself was related to good self-rated health (Odds ratio = 7.11), but stress or support from children, parents, friends, churches or spouses were not significant. White non-Hispanic and non-white non-Hispanic respondents had lower odds of reporting good self-rated health than Hispanic respondents (odds ratios were 2.87 and 2.81, respectively). Exercising five or more days per week also was related to good self-rated health. Smoking 20 or more cigarettes per day, and obese III were negatively related to good self-rated health (odds ratios were .19 and .22, respectively with corresponding p-values equal to .0043 and .0332).


Among younger low-income women, addressing low self-esteem might improve health status.