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Dr. Burcu KaramürselObstetrician, Gynecologist, Genital Esthetic Surgeon in Turkey
Cosmetic Gynecology Turkey

Treatment for Female Genital Mutilation Turkey

Treatment for Female Genital Mutilation Turkey

What is female genital mutilation?

Female genital mutilation (FGM) or female circumcision is a procedure in which female genital organs are cut or injured for no medical reason in certain African, Asian or Middle Eastern countries for traditional, cultural or religious reasons.

It is usually carried out before puberty starts.It involves partial or total removal of external genital organs or other types of damage performed on female external genitelia.

It is against the law in most European countries and it is a form of child abuse.

Is it legal to perform Female genital mutilation (FGM)?

It is illegal to perform Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) in must European countries because it can cause many short term and long term health problems. Since most of FGM cases are performed in aseptic conditions by people who have no medical education, it can lead to life threatening infections or bleeding.

Why is female genital mutilation carried out?

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is carried out for trditional, cultural or religous reasons in some countries. It has no health benefits, in contrast it is a hazardous procedure for infants and girls leading to severe health problems related to sexual life, child bearing and mental health.

All the reasons why Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is performed are based on gender unequality. Here are several reasons why FGM is performed:

  • To save a girl’s virginity for marriage
  • To prevent a girl from having sex, to control female sexuality
  • As a ritual to save family honour
  • Because laws to protect girls from FGM are not enforced

Where is Female genital mutilation (FGM) carried out?

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is carried out in several African, Asian, Latin American and Middle Eastern countries. It may also be performed in immigrant communities living in Europe, North America and New Zealand. Therefore it is a universal health problem.

What types of Female genital mutilation (FGM) exist?

There are 4 types of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM):

  1. Type 1 (Clitoridectomy): The clitoris is removed partially or totally.
  2. Type 2 (excision): Removing the clitoris, labia minora (inner lips) and Labia majora (outer lips) partially or totally.
  3. Type 3(infibulation): Narrowing the vaginal opening by cutting and repositioning the labia
  4. Destruction of female external genitals by cutting, burning, scraping, piercing and pricking.

What are the risks of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)?

There are certain health risks related to FGM procedures. These can be summarised into four categories:

  • Sex related problems
  • Problems related to urination(diffulty in urination or incontinence)
  • Child bearing problems
  • Mental health isuues

Patients may have constant pain after Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). It is also common to see infections and bleeding after FGM because most procedures are performed in unhealthy aseptic conditions by people who received no medical training. These problems can even be fatal such as serious infections or unstoppable bleeding.

What are the psychological effects of FGM?

  • Post-travmatic stress disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Memory loss around Female Genital Mutilation experience
  • Psychological discomfort during gynecological examinations and childbirth
  • Negative feelings about sex
  • Poor self esteem
  • Turmoil about the woman’s gender and sexual identity

How does Female genital mutilation (FGM) affect a woman’s sex life?

Sex can be very painful after Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). It also affects the women very negatively so that she may lose her desire for sex. Clitoris is an important organ for female sexual pleasure and its total removal may lead to lack of pleasure during sex.

This is a treatable condition, sensual labial tissue flaps may be used to reconstruct clitoral tissue. Pschological counselling should be offered to all women who experienced FGM to restore their sexual function.

What are the health problems caused by FGM?

  • Severe pain
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Keloid formation (excessive scar tissue formation during wound healing)
  • Hemorrhagic shock and even death
  • Infections
  • Genital tissue swelling
  • Urinary problems (painful urination, urinary tract infection or urinary incontinence)
  • Injury to surrounding genital tissue
  • Menstrual problems (pain during menstruation, blockage of menstrual blood passage)
  • Sexual problems
  • Increased risk of complications during childbirth (Difficult delivery, increased risk of C-section, excessive bleeding, increased risk of neonatal death)

How does Female genital mutilation (FGM) affect reproductive health?

Repeated infections after Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) may lead to infertility in some patients. FGM may also lead to problems during labour and childbirth. Treatment may be necessary for some patients to be able to get pregnant or to give vaginal birth. They should ideally be treated before pregnancy if infibulation was performed to open tha vaginal orifice.

Is there any health benefit of Female genital mutilation (FGM)?

There re no health benefits of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). In contrast it has many hazardous effects on a woman’s health and some of these effects may be irreversible. FGM is a form of sexual violence and it is against human rights.

Therefore there are non-profit foundations around the world trying to educate people for the elimination of FGM.

WHO has developed a global strategy against FGM medicalisation with partner organisations and continues to support countries in its implementation.

Treatment for Female Genital Mutilation Turkey

There are surgical methods to restore the clitoris and external female genital organs harmed by FGM. These procedures are:

  • Deinfibulation: Most female genital mutilation procedures close or narrow vaginal orifice. Deinfibulation procedure is performed to open or enlarge vaginal enterance.
  • Clitoral reconstruction: Most FGM procedures remove the clitoris partially or totally. During reconstruction, portions of the clitoris may be found under scar tissue and the scar tissue may be removed for the clitoris to be stimulated more easily. Labial flaps and other approaches may be used in a tailored manner to reconstruct the clitoris.

Can a woman have normal sex life after treatment for Female Genital Mutilation?

Woman should be offered psychotherapy and sexual therapy to improve their sexual or orgasmic functioning after Female Genital Mutilation. Although clitoral reconstruction by surgery may allow many women to become clitoral orgasmic, it should be noted that clitoris is not the only organ responsible for female orgasm and counselling may improve women’s sexual function.

Can a woman give birth after treatment for Female genital mutilation?

A woman can give birth after treatment for Female Genital Mutilation. However the risk of several complications will beincreased such as:

  • Perineal tears during vaginal birth
  • Dystocia (difficult delivery)
  • Increased risk of C-Section
  • Increased risk of neaonatal death due to dystocia
  • Higher risk of stool and urinary incontinence after birth
Update Date: 30.01.2024
Burcu Karamürsel, MD
Editor
Dr. Burcu Karamürsel
Burcu Karamürsel, MD
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Burcu Karamürsel, MDDr. Burcu KaramürselObstetrician, Gynecologist, Genital Esthetic Surgeon in Turkey
+90312 219 2233+90545 219 2234
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