Women and girls living with FGM have experienced a harmful practice. Experience of FGM increases the short and long term health risks to women and girls and is unacceptable from a human rights and health perspective. While in general there is an increased risk of adverse health outcomes with increased severity of FGM, WHO is opposed to all forms of FGM and is emphatically against the practice being carried out by health care providers (medicalization).
Short-term health risks of FGM
Severe pain: cutting the nerve ends and sensitive genital tissue causes extreme pain. Proper anaesthesia is rarely used and, when used, is not always effective. The healing period is also painful. Type III FGM is a more extensive procedure of longer duration, hence the intensity and duration of pain may be more severe. The healing period is also prolonged and intensified accordingly.
Excessive bleeding: (haemorrhage) can result if the …