Obstetric Fistula Repair: Experience with Hospital-Based Outreach Approach in Nigeria

  •  Anifeiok Umoiyoho    
  •  Emmanuel Inyang-Etoh    
  •  Etiobong Etukumana    


Background: The huge back-log of obstetric fistula and the increasing incidence of the condition in Nigeria is a cause for concern for all stake-holders. This worrisome trend requires concerted effort with innovative strategies to redress the situation. Methods: Hospital-based outreach programs sponsored by a non-governmental organization with volunteer medical and health personnel were used to repair selected cases of obstetric fistula in Nigeria. Results: Fifty-two relatively simple obstetric fistulas were selected out of 68 (selection rate 76.5%) that presented for repair at 12 outreach programs in 5 different states of Nigeria. All the cases were repaired by one trained gynecological surgeon with a cure rate of 100%. The majority (50.0%) of the women were aged between 16 and 20 years with a mean age of 23.8 years ± 3.6. Most (80.9%) of the women in the study population were primiparous. The majority (50.0%) of the women were divorced at the time of their presentation for repair. A vast majority (76.9%) of the women had either primary level of education or no formal education. There was a preponderance (53.8%) of juxtacervical VVF among women in the study population. Conclusion: The use of hospital- based outreach approach to repair simple cases of obstetric fistula if multiplied could help reduce the large number of women living with unrepaired VVF in Nigeria.

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