World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Nigeria: Fortnight of fistula correction by UN

Fortnight of fistula correction kicked off in Nigeria, UN Population Fund says

22 February 2005 – Forty-six women have undergone surgery in northern Nigeria to correct fistula, an obstetric injury that leads to incontinence and stigmatization, kicking off a two-week campaign sponsored in part by the United Nations population agency to treat hundreds of women and train more doctors and nurses.

The injury to the mother’s birth canal was not only severely traumatic for her, but was usually fatal for the baby, leading to high mortality in Africa from a condition that was wiped out 100 years ago in Europe and the United Sates, the chief of Media Services for the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), Kristen Hetle, told a press briefing today at UN Headquarters in New York.

“There’s no nice way to talk about it,” she said. “They (the mothers) leak urine or faeces, or both,” and that results in their being ostracized by their families and the rest of society.

“Fistula is unpleasant to talk about, but easy to cure,” she added.

The condition was usually brought on by early marriages and pregnancies, when the birth canal is immature, as well as by malnutrition, and an estimate of 800,000 sufferers in Nigeria might be low, Ms. Hetle said.

Among the important doctors in the campaign are Dutch surgeon Kees Waaldijk, who has operated on 33,000 women in his 20 years in Nigeria and established seven fistula centres in Nigeria and three in Niger. Nigerian surgeon Said Ahmad has been doing corrective fistula surgery in northern Kano State for 12 years.

UNFPA launched its campaign to end fistula in 30 countries in Africa, the Arab states and South Asia year before last.

Besides UNFPA, campaign sponsors for the Nigerian effort are the Federal and State Government agencies, the Nigerian Red Cross, the Virgin Group’s key charity arm, Virgin Unite, created “to help out with some of the tougher challenges facing the world today, local and international,” the United Kingdom’s Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) and local non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Surgeon James Marion Sims of the United States performed the first successful fistula surgery in the world in 1849 and established the first fistula hospital in 1857 in Manhattan’s East Side, according to UNFPA. He is seen as the founder of gynaecology.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

ALSO:

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC