VOLUME 4 - NUMBER 2-3 - 2022
Sexual health in women with female genital mutilation
Sílvia Escura Sancho, Sònia Anglès-Acedo, Meritxell Oliver Marrugat, Laura Ribera Torres, Camil Castelo-Branco
Full text PDF
Objective: Female genital mutilation or cutting (FGM/C) includes all the procedures which involve the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons. FGM/C exposes women to short and long-term health risks, such as sexual health impairment. For this reason, we have designed this review with the aim to investigate the impact of FGM/C on female sexual health.
Methods: We searched Embase, Medline, and the Cochrane library to identify potentially relevant English publications on the effect of FGM/C on women’s sexual health.
Results: FGM/C constitutes a violation of sexual rights, including the principle of autonomy, integrity and sexual security of the body, as well as the right to sexual equality. A large proportion of women with FGM/C have female sexual dysfunction.
Sexual therapy aims to empower these women to identify their own pleasure, raise their awareness about sensorial perceptions and sensuality, improve their genital image and self-esteem and also the proprioception of their genital area. Reconstructive surgery represents one of the therapeutic alternatives for women with FGM/C.
Conclusions: Sexuality in women with FGM/C needs to be evaluated by a multidisciplinary team in order to offer an appropriate and personalized treatment, considering the physical and psychological dimensions of the individual.
KEY WORDS: Female genital mutilation, female genital cutting, sexual health, sexual rights, reconstructive surgery.