Saturday, May 23, is the International Day to End Obstetric Fistulas. "Let’s not forget that this is not an African problem, an Asian problem; this is a problem of women, mothers, not getting the right care."—MSF fistula surgeon Geert Morren
Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) field worker Bilkisu Aliyu works closely with women in MSF's fistula repair project in Jahun, Nigeria. She describes the difficult situations that many fistula patients face. Learn more about what women with fistulas face at Because Tomorrow Needs Her.
Usually the result of complications during delivery, a fistula is an opening between the bladder and the vagina, or between the rectum and the vagina. Women become incontinent, and are often shunned from their societies and families as a result. They can also suffer additional medical consequences. Access to pre-natal care and interventions to assist with complicated labor, including C-sections are essential to preventing fistulas.