Wluml dossier 3 June/July 1988 Sexual Mutilations

Complications of infibulation

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Complications of infibulation:

There are two categories of complications from infibulation, the immediate and the delayed.

Immediate complications

• Haemorrhaging

• Lesions of neighbouring organs

Acute urinary retention

• General and local infections
Delayed complications

Urinary infections

• Acute urinary retention

• Bladder stones

There are also gyneo-surgical complications:

keloid scar

• formation of cysts

• excessive bleeding

• Dysmenorrhoea

• Cryptomenhorria and hematocolpas

Chronic pelvic infection

• Sterility

• complications of disinfibulation (which we look at later in the section dealing with the traditional practices affecting the health of the mother)

• obstetric complications (also detailed later)

• psychological complications
The list of complications following infibulation is extremely long. Some are serious and can prove fatal, both as far as the girl, the mother and the foetus are concerned. Complications and accidents are known to the public, especially to medical and para-medical bodies. By the fact that this ritual operation is deeply rooted in customs, we are forced to look into the reasons for continuing such mutilation.

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