Female genital mutilation: a hidden epidemic (statement from the European Academy of Paediatrics).

Eur J Pediatr. 2013 Aug 28. [Epub ahead of print]

Female genital mutilation: a hidden epidemic (statement from the European Academy of Paediatrics).

Sauer PJ, Neubauer D.

Beatrix Children Hospital/UMCG, PO BOX 30.001, 9700 RB, Groningen, The Netherlands, p.j.j.sauer@umcg.nl.


Female genital mutilation or female circumcision is frequently performed worldwide. It is estimated by the World Health Organisation that worldwide, 100-140 million girls and women currently have to live with the consequences of female genital mutilation. The article argues that the tradition is one of the causes, while another four possible reasons for undergoing such cruel mutilation of young girls exist. Today, there exists a classification of at least four different ways of such mutilation which has no health benefits, and it harms girls and women in many ways. Long-term consequences like recurrent urinary tract infections, dysmenorrhea, sexual problems, infertility and complications both for the mother and infant at delivery are mentioned. Female genital mutilation is a violation of the fundamental human rights, as well as a savage breach of the integrity and personality. Conclusion: The European Academy of Paediatrics advises its members to initiate appropriate counselling for parents and female adolescents regarding the risk of female genital mutilation and strongly condemns female genital mutilation and councils its members not to perform such procedures.

This article can be accessed in this LINK