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      Estimates of female genital mutilation/cutting in the Netherlands: a comparison between a nationwide survey in midwifery practices and extrapolation-model

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          Abstract

          Background

          Owing to migration, female genital mutilation or cutting (FGM/C) has become a growing concern in host countries in which FGM/C is not familiar. There is a need for reliable estimates of FGM/C prevalence to inform medical and public health policy. We aimed to advance methodology for estimating the prevalence of FGM/C in diaspora by determining the prevalence of FGM/C among women giving birth in the Netherlands.

          Methods

          Two methods were applied to estimate the prevalence of FGM/C in women giving birth: (I) direct estimation of FGM/C was performed through a nationwide survey of all midwifery practices in the Netherlands and (II) the extrapolation model was adopted for indirect estimation of FGM/C, by applying population-based-survey data on FGM/C in country of origin to migrant women who gave birth in 2018 in the Netherlands.

          Results

          A nationwide survey among primary care midwifery practices that provided care for 57.5% of all deliveries in 2018 in the Netherlands, reported 523 cases of FGM/C, constituting FGM/C prevalence of 0.54%. The indirect estimation of FGM/C in an extrapolation-model resulted in an estimated prevalence of 1.55%. Possible reasons for the difference in FGM/C prevalence between direct- and indirect estimation include that the midwives were not being able to recognize, record or classify FGM/C, referral to an obstetrician before assessing FGM/C status of women and selective responding to the survey. Also, migrants might differ from people in their country of origin in terms of acculturation toward discontinuation of the practice. This may have contributed to the higher indirect-estimation of FGM/C compared to direct estimation of FGM/C.

          Conclusions

          The current study has provided insight into direct estimation of FGM/C through a survey of midwifery practices in the Netherlands. Evidence based on midwifery practices data can be regarded as a minimum benchmark for actual prevalence among the subpopulation of women who gave birth in a given year.

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          Most cited references 12

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          Female genital mutilation and obstetric outcome: WHO collaborative prospective study in six African countries.

          Reliable evidence about the effect of female genital mutilation (FGM) on obstetric outcome is scarce. This study examines the effect of different types of FGM on obstetric outcome. 28 393 women attending for singleton delivery between November, 2001, and March, 2003, at 28 obstetric centres in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sudan were examined before delivery to ascertain whether or not they had undergone FGM, and were classified according to the WHO system: FGM I, removal of the prepuce or clitoris, or both; FGM II, removal of clitoris and labia minora; and FGM III, removal of part or all of the external genitalia with stitching or narrowing of the vaginal opening. Prospective information on demographic, health, and reproductive factors was gathered. Participants and their infants were followed up until maternal discharge from hospital. Compared with women without FGM, the adjusted relative risks of certain obstetric complications were, in women with FGM I, II, and III, respectively: caesarean section 1.03 (95% CI 0.88-1.21), 1.29 (1.09-1.52), 1.31 (1.01-1.70); postpartum haemorrhage 1.03 (0.87-1.21), 1.21 (1.01-1.43), 1.69 (1.34-2.12); extended maternal hospital stay 1.15 (0.97-1.35), 1.51 (1.29-1.76), 1.98 (1.54-2.54); infant resuscitation 1.11 (0.95-1.28), 1.28 (1.10-1.49), 1.66 (1.31-2.10), stillbirth or early neonatal death 1.15 (0.94-1.41), 1.32 (1.08-1.62), 1.55 (1.12-2.16), and low birthweight 0.94 (0.82-1.07), 1.03 (0.89-1.18), 0.91 (0.74-1.11). Parity did not significantly affect these relative risks. FGM is estimated to lead to an extra one to two perinatal deaths per 100 deliveries. Women with FGM are significantly more likely than those without FGM to have adverse obstetric outcomes. Risks seem to be greater with more extensive FGM.
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            Effects of female genital cutting on physical health outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis

            Objective Worldwide, an estimated 125 million girls and women live with female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C). We aimed to systematically review the evidence for physical health risks associated with FGM/C. Design We searched 15 databases to identify studies (up to January 2012). Selection criteria were empirical studies reporting physical health outcomes from FGM/C, affecting females with any type of FGM/C, irrespective of ethnicity, nationality and age. Two review authors independently screened titles and abstracts, applied eligibility criteria, assessed methodological study quality and extracted full-text data. To derive overall risk estimates, we combined data from included studies using the Mantel-Haenszel method for unadjusted dichotomous data and the generic inverse-variance method for adjusted data. Outcomes that were sufficiently similar across studies and reasonably resistant to biases were aggregated in meta-analyses. We applied the instrument Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation to assess the extent to which we have confidence in the effect estimates. Results Our search returned 5109 results, of which 185 studies (3.17 million women) satisfied the inclusion criteria. The risks of systematic and random errors were variable and we focused on key outcomes from the 57 studies with the best available evidence. The most common immediate complications were excessive bleeding, urine retention and genital tissue swelling. The most valid and statistically significant associations for the physical health sequelae of FGM/C were seen on urinary tract infections (unadjusted RR=3.01), bacterial vaginosis (adjusted OR (AOR)=1.68), dyspareunia (RR=1.53), prolonged labour (AOR=1.49), caesarean section (AOR=1.60), and difficult delivery (AOR=1.88). Conclusions While the precise estimation of the frequency and risk of immediate, gynaecological, sexual and obstetric complications is not possible, the results weigh against the continuation of FGM/C and support the diagnosis and management of girls and women suffering the physical risks of FGM/C. Trial registration number This study is registered with PROSPERO, number CRD42012003321.
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              Coping and chronic psychosocial consequences of female genital mutilation in The Netherlands.

              The study presented in this article explored psychosocial and relational problems of African immigrant women in The Netherlands who underwent female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), the causes they attribute to these problems--in particular, their opinions about the relationship between these problems and their circumcision--and the way they cope with these health complaints.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                r.kawous@pharos.nl
                Journal
                BMC Public Health
                BMC Public Health
                BMC Public Health
                BioMed Central (London )
                1471-2458
                29 June 2020
                29 June 2020
                2020
                : 20
                Affiliations
                [1 ]GRID grid.5645.2, ISNI 000000040459992X, Department of Public Health, , Erasmus University Medical Centre, ; Rotterdam, the Netherlands
                [2 ]GRID grid.10417.33, ISNI 0000 0004 0444 9382, Department of Primary and Community Care, , Radboud University Medical Centre, ; Nijmegen, the Netherlands
                [3 ]Pharos, Dutch Centre of Expertise on Health Disparities, Utrecht, the Netherlands
                [4 ]GRID grid.6292.f, ISNI 0000 0004 1757 1758, Department of Statistical Sciences “Paolo Fortunati”, , Alma Mater Studiorum - University of Bologna, ; Bologna, Italy
                [5 ]GRID grid.6906.9, ISNI 0000000092621349, Department of Socio-Medical Sciences, Erasmus School of Health Policy and Management, , Erasmus University Rotterdam, ; Rotterdam, the Netherlands
                Article
                9151
                10.1186/s12889-020-09151-0
                7325136
                32600380
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Open AccessThis article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

                Funding
                Funded by: FundRef http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100002999, Ministerie van Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport;
                Award ID: 326523
                Award Recipient :
                Categories
                Research Article
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                © The Author(s) 2020

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