A male companion at antenatal care is unusual and spousal participation during labor and delivery in Nigeria is poor. This can be attributed to amongst other things the beliefs that labor is exclusively a women affair. Although there are few studies about male involvement in maternity care in Nigeria, no review has been conducted regarding spousal participation in labor and delivery. Therefore, majority of women desire their spouses as birth companions and attest to having emotional comfort and support when their spouses participate in their labor and delivery, the status and acceptability of spousal participation in labor and delivery in Nigeria is quite low due in part to socio‑cultural drawbacks. This narrative review looks at existing research literatures identified through electronic sources such as Google Scholar, PubMed and EBSCO published in English between 1995 and 2013. The aim of this narrative review is to extract from these literatures the level of participation of Nigerian spouses in labor and delivery. Keys words used for the search include spouse, labor, delivery, Nigeria, maternal; childbirth and only English papers were included. Although presently weak, the spousal participation in labor and delivery in Nigeria should be encouraged and promoted as a deliberate health‑care policy through the creation of an enabling environment and dissemination of information highlighting the pivotal role that spouses could play in labor and delivery.
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