Reproductive Health and Wellness
Medicalization of Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting
Globally 100–140 million women and girls have been subjected to female genital mutilation/cutting
(FGM/C) which is a harmful practice, associated with immediate and long term complications, has no
benefit what so ever, is unethical and has no religious basis. Inspite of global efforts to eradicate FGM/C
every year 3 million girls are subjected to this harmful practice mostly in Africa and Asia.
In some countries FGM/C is increasingly performed by health-care providers, which is alarming. Medicalization
of FGM/C is proposed by some health professionals to reduce the incidence of its complications.
However medicalization of FGM/C will not reduce the long term complications of FGM, has no benefit
what so ever, has no medical indication, and thus its performance violates the code of medical ethics. Furthermore
its medicalization would result in a setback in the global efforts to eradicate this harmful practice,
and will give the green light to its performance by non health-care providers with subsequent increased
incidence of complications.
In some Muslim countries where FGM/C is prevalent it is often wrongly quoted that the basis for performing
FGM/C is religious instruction. FGM/C has no religious basis what so ever and has been condemned by Al-
Azhar based on several verses in the Holy Quraan that relates explicitly or implicitly to female circumcision.
The use of the gender term “Sunna circumcision” is nothing but a form of deceit used to misguide people
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