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Feature: Issues on female genital mutilation/cutting—progress and parallels

Lancet. 2006 Dec;368:S64 – S67

Feature: Issues on female genital mutilation/cutting—progress and parallels

Morris K


Practices vary and include sewing the labia together, clitoral tip removal, and total excision of clitoris and labia majora, sometimes with subsequent closure of wound edges (infibulation), leaving a small hole for menstrual and urinary flow. More than 130 million women and girls alive today have undergone FGM/C, in some countries in Africa, the middle East, and southeast Asia, and increasingly among migrants from these areas. Girls mostly aged 5—14 years (though in some countries under 5 years) are generally subjected to FGM/C—and boys circumcised— by lay practitioners in unsterile conditions. Robust evidence now links FGM/C with primary infertility, poorer obstetric outcomes, and neonatal complications…

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