International Day to End Obstetric Fistula
International Day to End Obstetric Fistula falls on May 23 of every year. It’s a devastating childbirth injury to women who experience it, usually lethal to unborn babies and it is not only treatable but largely preventable. A hole between the birth canal and bladder and/or rectum, it is caused by prolonged, obstructed labor without access to timely, high-quality medical treatment.
The injury has all but disappeared in rich countries but persists in poorer countries – an estimated 500,000 women and girls live with the condition. Young bodies not ready for pregnancy and childbirth in the case of child marriage or unintended pregnancy are especially vulnerable. Its occurrence is a violation of human rights and a reminder of gross inequities.