Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting is a recognized human rights violation. It is a massive problem faced here in Egypt and in many more countries across Africa and Asia. The current prevalence of FGM/C in Egypt is 87%. FGM can cause an array of short and long term complications which affect many aspects of female health.
Some of the short term complications are:
- Severe bleeding
- Problems with urination
- Genital pain and swelling
- Development of genital cyst
- Neurogenic and hypovolemic shock and possible death
Some of the long term complications are:
- Chronic genital infections
- Sexual function abnormalities such as painful intercourse and reduced sensation
- Formation of scar tissue or keloids
- Problems with menstruation
- Problems with urination
- Psychological trauma
Currently, the women who have undergone FGM/C here in Egypt have no place to seek treatment for any complications they may suffer from due to FGM. It is important to be able to provide the services necessary for these women, which is why we are opening a multidisciplinary center to attend to these womens’ needs. This center will provide all services which start from basic sexual and reproductive health education, psychological support and even genital reparative surgery. Treatment for FGM/C related issues requires a multidisciplinary approach and this is exactly what we plan to do. Women who suffer from any complications due to female genital mutilation/cutting will be able to come to this center and find a professional who can help them with their specific concern or issue. We would like to provide sexual educational classes to enlighten these women on basic information important for any woman to know. We will also provide psychologists to help overcome any trauma or psychological problems these women may be facing. Support groups will be available to bring FGM victims together to discuss and work through their issues together for emotional support. Sessions with someone specialized in sex therapy will also be available to consult and guide women and couples on any issues they may have due to being cut. And finally, we will also provide consultations and surgery for women who may benefit from or require genital reconstructive procedures, due to anatomical complications of FGM. Procedures which may be required to treat consequences of FGM are deinfibulation, labial repair and of course clitoral reconstruction. According to the research published on clitoral reconstruction after FGM, women who seek this procedure should be approached in a multidisciplinary manner and that is exactly what we want to do. This center will be open to all victims of FGM regardless of their nationality or background. This is an opportunity to help alleviate some of the pain these women have endured and provide them with a place where they can feel safe and find professionals who can help them regardless of what issues they may suffer from due to being cut/mutilated. We are currently in the process of raising funds for this center so that we may provide all these services free of charge.