News / Africa

Surgeons Bring Relief to South Sudan Obstetric Fistula Sufferers

Sudan - South Sudan mapSudan - South Sudan map
x
Sudan - South Sudan map
Sudan - South Sudan map
Lucy Poni
Doctors in South Sudan have wrapped up a two-week campaign to perform reparative surgery on scores of women with obstetric fistula, a condition that causes incontinence and is linked to obstructed labor, a leading cause of maternal mortality.

The corrective operations were offered in three South Sudanese cities -- Wau, Kwajock and Juba. Eighty-six women turned up for operations at Juba Teaching Hospital, including Lilian Pita who underwent her fourth surgery for obstetric fistula.

Pita's operation was a success, and she urged other women to undergo the operation next time it is offered.

“I am now OK. I am happy because there is no urine in my bedding," she told VOA News.

"Before... I felt so sad and everyone would insult me. But now, I am fine. When I go home, the people who were insulting me will now be embarrassed,” she said.

Three women were brought from Yida refugee camp in Unity state, where tens of thousands of people who have fled fighting in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states in neighboring Sudan, for the operation. Two of the women underwent surgery, but the third, Neimat Said, was not so lucky.

"They said I should come back in February... I am very angry," she said.

"We will go back but how will I live? I don’t want to go back alone; if possible, I
should be left here until February,” she said.

One of the doctors performing the surgeries, Merghani Abdallah, said some women had to be turned away because of the massive turnout for the operation, and because some of the women need "special operations."

But, he said, "I have just been talking with the person responsible in the United Nations Populations Fund... and there may be another campaign in the beginning of the year."

Officials estimate that more than 60,000 South Sudanese women suffer from obstetric fistula, a preventable medical condition in which a hole develops between the birth canal and one or more of the woman's internal organs.

In the overwhelming majority of cases of obstetric fistula, the condition is caused by prolonged obstructed labor, which is also a leading cause of maternal mortality.

According to the Fistula Foundation, around five percent of all pregnant women worldwide experience obstructed labor, but in developed countries, where emergency obstetric care is available, obstetric fistulae have been almost entirely eliminated.

In developing countries like South Sudan, on the other hand, "where there are few hospitals, few doctors, and poor transportation systems, and where women are not highly valued, obstructed labor often results in death of the mother. When she survives, there is a great likelihood her child will die and she will develop a fistula," the foundation says.

You May Like

Cambodia Seeks Official UN Maps for Vietnam Border

Notice of request comes as 2 countries open border talks Tuesday after a clash last month More

From South Africa to Vietnam, Cyclists Deliver Message Against Rhino Horns

Appalled by poaching they saw firsthand, sisters embark on tour to raise awareness in countries where rhino horn products are in demand More

Uber Wants Johannesburg Police Protection

Request follows recent protests outside ride-hailing service's Johannesburg office More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Implant Could Help Restore Movement to Paralyzed Limbsi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
Maia Pujara
July 07, 2015 10:01 PM
A half-million people suffer spinal cord injuries each year because of car accidents, serious falls and diseases, according to the World Health Organization. Researchers are now working on a soft but strong spinal cord implant that could one day restore movement in paralyzed individuals. VOA’s Maia Pujara reports.
Video

Video New Implant Could Help Restore Movement to Paralyzed Limbs

A half-million people suffer spinal cord injuries each year because of car accidents, serious falls and diseases, according to the World Health Organization. Researchers are now working on a soft but strong spinal cord implant that could one day restore movement in paralyzed individuals. VOA’s Maia Pujara reports.
Video

Video Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deal

If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.

VOA Blogs