Tag Archives: Reinfibulation*

“FGM must now be reported but reinfibulation guidance is needed”

FREENurs Times. 2015 Mar 4-10;111(10):7.

“FGM must now be reported but reinfibulation guidance is needed”

Richens Y


Since its inception, it has lobbied for a confidential national reporting system.

There were two reasons for this: the first is that as a group of clinicians, we could not provide effective evidence-based care for women if we did not know how many women had been subject to this abhorrent procedure; the second is that we wanted to provide clinical education for midwives, nurses, health visitors and doctors so that the best care can be provided to women.

With the support of Baroness Rendell, who has been raising questions in the House of Lords for nearly two decades, we met with Jane Ellison MP. It was a real meeting of minds and it was clear that, from this meeting, we would finally make progress when she agreed that it was nigh on impossible for us to address a problem in the UK without knowing the true extent of it….

This article is available in this LINK

An explorative study of Sudanese midwives’ motives, perceptions and experiences of re-infibulation after birth

Midwifery. 2004, 20(4); 299–311.

An explorative study of Sudanese midwives’ motives, perceptions and experiences of re-infibulation after birth

Berggren V, Abdel Salam G, Bergström S, Johansson E, Edberg A


Objective: to explore Sudanese midwives’ motives for and perceptions and experiences of re-infibulation after birth and to elucidate its context and determinants. Design: triangulation of methods, using observational techniques and open-ended interviews. Setting and participants: two government hospitals in Khartoum/Omdurman, Sudan, for the observations and in-depth interviews with 17 midwives. Findings: midwives are among the major stakeholders in the performance of primary female genital cutting (FGC) as well as re-infibulation. Focusing on re-infibulation after birth, midwives were trying to satisfy differing, and sometimes contradictory, perspectives. The practice of re-infibulation (El Adel) represented a considerable source of income for the midwives. The midwives integrated the practice of re-infibulation into a greater whole of doing well for the woman, through an endeavour to increase her value by helping her to maintain her marriage as well as striving for beautification and completion. They were also trying to meet socio-cultural requests, dealing with pressure from the family while balancing on the edge of the law. Key conclusions and implications for practice: the findings confirm that midwives are important stakeholders in perpetuating re-infibulation, and indicate that the motives are more complex than being only economic. The constant balancing between demands from others puts the midwives in a difficult position. Midwives’ potential role to influence views in the preventative work against FGC and re-infibulation should be acknowledged in further abolition efforts.

This article can be accessed online

Female genital cutting

J Obstet Gynaecol Can. 2014 Aug;36(8):671-2.FREE

Female genital cutting

Kotaska A, Avery L

Comment in J Obstet Gynaecol Can. 2014 Aug;36(8):672.


Female genital cutting (FGC) is unethical. It causes physical, psychological, and emotional harm, and is rarely performed with consent. SOGC Clinical Practice Guideline no. 299 on FGC outlines this argument well.1 However, re-infibulation is inappropriately bundled together with FGC. Re-infibulation is fundamentally different, surgically and ethically, from FGC. The two need to be examined independently, particularly since the guideline prohibits re-infibulation…

This article can be accessed in this LINK

The issue of reinfibulation.

Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2010 May;109(2):93-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2010.01.001. Epub 2010 Feb 6.

The issue of reinfibulation.

Serour GI.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, International Islamic Center for Population Studies and Research, Al Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt. giserour1@link.net


Reinfibulation is resuturing after delivery or gynecological procedures of the incised scar tissue resulting from infibulation. Despite the global fight against female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), reinfibulation of previously mutilated or circumcised women is still performed in various countries around the world. A good estimate of the prevalence of reinfibulation is difficult to obtain, but it can be inferred that 6.5-10.4million women are likely to have been reinfibulated worldwide. Women who undergo reinfibulation have little influence on the decision-making and are usually persuaded by the midwife or birth attendant to undergo the procedure immediately following labor or gynecological operation. Although medicalization of reinfibulation may reduce its immediate risks, it has no effect on the incidence of long-term risks. Reinfibulation is performed mainly for the financial benefit of the operator, and cultural values that have been perpetuated for generations. Reinfibulation has no benefits and is associated with complications for the woman and the unborn child. Its medicalization violates the medical code of ethics and should be abandoned. International and national efforts should be combined to eradicate this practice.

This article can be purchased in this LINK

Reinfibulation among women in a rural area in Central Sudan

Health Care Women Int. 2001 22(8):711-721. 10.1080/073993301753339933

Reinfibulation among women in a rural area in Central Sudan

Almroth-Berggren V, Almroth L, Bergström S, Hassanein OS, El Hadi N, Lithell U

Reinfibulation is performed on women previously subjected to infibulation and who have given birth. To investigate the practice and attitudes concerning reinfibulation, we randomly selected for interviews 60 young women and grandmothers in a rural village in central Sudan. Reinfibulation was widely practised in this area. The main motive for performing reinfibulation was to satisfy the husband sexually. The young women saw themselves as passive in the decision process, claiming that the midwife and female relatives were behind the decision. Men were not involved in decisions to perform reinfibulation but seemed to play a supportive role when decisions were made not to perform it. Some young women had decided to break the pattern and not be reinfibulated. Through the interviews, we found that the practice carries the risk of several serious complications, which demonstrates that reinfibulation is an important health issue.

This article can be purchased in this LINK

Special commentary on the issue of reinfibulation

International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics. 2010 May;109(2):97-99

Special commentary on the issue of reinfibulation

Cook RJ, Dickens BM

Faculty of Law, Faculty of Medicine and Joint Centre for Bioethics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada


Policy on reinfibulation exposes the interface between individual or micro-ethics and population-wide or macro-ethics. If, following childbirth, an infibulated woman requests reinfibulation, a gynecologist may respectfully advise her of its negative implications, but would not act in breach of ethical or usually legal requirements in undertaking the procedure. However, as a matter of health policy and professional responsibility, physicians should refuse to initiate infibulation, and advise their patients and communities that the procedure is harmful, not required by religious or other ordinance, and frequently if not always unlawful. Reinfibulation is not genital cutting (or “mutilation”) in itself, but when undertaken by a physician may appear to condone infibulation. This is contrary to medical professional ethics, which condemn medicalization of infibulation and generally of reinfibulation, even as a harm-reduction strategy to spare women the risks of injury and infection from unskilled interventions.

This article can be purchased in this LINK