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London, United Kingdom, IPPF, 2001.  p.This statement by IPPF focuses on female genital mutilation (FGM). It discusses the rates of FGM in different parts of the world, the typical age range, and describes the different classifications of FGM. It also touches on the health consequences as well as the roles of family planning associations (FPAs).
African Journal of Reproductive Health. 2008 Apr; 12(1):7-11.Add to my documents.
Eliminating female genital mutilation: an interagency statement. OHCHR, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNECA, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNIFEM, WHO.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], 2008. 41 p.The term 'female genital mutilation' (also called 'female genital cutting' and 'female genital mutilation/cutting') refers to all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons. Between 100 and 140 million girls and women in the world are estimated to have undergone such procedures, and 3 million girls are estimated to be at risk of undergoing the procedures every year. Female genital mutilation has been reported to occur in all parts of the world, but it is most prevalent in: the western, eastern, and north-eastern regions of Africa, some countries in Asia and the Middle East and among certain immigrant communities in North America and Europe. Female genital mutilation has no known health benefits. On the contrary, it is known to be harmful to girls and women in many ways. First and foremost, it is painful and traumatic. The removal of or damage to healthy, normal genital tissue interferes with the natural functioning of the body and causes several immediate and long-term health consequences. For example, babies born to women who have undergone female genital mutilation suffer a higher rate of neonatal death compared with babies born to women who have not undergone the procedure. (excerpt)
BMJ. British Medical Journal. 2006 Jul 15; 333(7559):106-107.In this week's BMJ, Elmusharaf and colleagues present a study of the agreement between self reports of female genital mutilation and the findings of clinical examination in a cohort of girls and another of women. They report that girls and women were inaccurate in describing what had been done to them, and that the actual mutilations did not readily fit into the World Health Organization's classification system. These findings have implications for research and, more broadly, for tackling the problem of female genital mutilation worldwide. They suggest that we need to re-examine our current conceptualisation of female genital mutilation with a view to defining a valid and reliable definition and classification system. (excerpt)
Reliability of self reported form of female genital mutilation and WHO classification: cross sectional study.
BMJ. British Medical Journal. 2006 Jul 15; 333(7559):124.The objective was to assess the reliability of self reported form of female genital mutilation (FGM) and to compare the extent of cutting verified by clinical examination with the corresponding World Health Organization classification. Design: Cross sectional study. Settings: One paediatric hospital and one gynaecological outpatient clinic in Khartoum, Sudan, 2003-4. Participants: 255 girls aged 4-9 and 282 women aged 17-35. Main outcome measures: The women's reports of FGM the actual anatomical extent of the mutilation, and the corresponding types according to the WHO classification. All girls and women reported to have undergone FGM had this verified by genital inspection. None of those who said they had not undergone FGM were found to have it. Many said to have undergone "sunna circumcision" (excision of prepuce and part or all of clitoris, equivalent to WHO type I) had a form of FGM extending beyond the clitoris (10/23 (43%) girls and 20/35 (57%) women). Of those who said they had undergone this form, nine girls (39%) and 19 women (54%) actually had WHO type III (infibulation and excision of part or all of external genitalia). The anatomical extent of forms classified as WHO type III varies widely. In 12/32 girls (38%) and 27/245 women (11%) classified as having WHO type III, the labia majora were not involved. Thus there is a substantial overlap, in an anatomical sense, between WHO types II and III. The reliability of reported form of FGM is low. There is considerable under-reporting of the extent. The WHO classification fails to relate the defined forms to the severity of the operation. It is important to be aware of these aspects in the conduct and interpretation of epidemiological and clinical studies. WHO should revise its classification. (author's)