Psychological consequences of female genital mutilation: A mixed-method systematic review

South African Journal of Physiotherapy

Field Value
Title Psychological consequences of female genital mutilation: A mixed-method systematic review
Creator Reman, Tara Balligand, Valerie Schoefs, Benoit Feipel, Veronique Bertuit, Jeanne
Subject Psychology; interdisciplinary studies; Women health female genital mutilation; cutting; mental health; psychological symptoms; mixed method systematic review
Description Background: Female genital mutilation (FGM/C) defined as ‘all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons’ is a cultural practice having several consequences on women’s health. Medical and sexual consequences have been documented, but the link between FGM/C and the development of psychological symptoms is not clearly established. The influence of contextual factors is poorly understood.Objectives: To evaluate the psychological impact of FGM/C and how victims experience it.Method: A mixed method systematic review was conducted. The inclusion criteria were observational primary studies involving women who had undergone FGM/C and had experienced psychological symptoms. Publication bias was assessed by using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool. A configurative strategy that involved a comparison of quantitative and qualitative data was used, followed by an analysis of causal link between FGM/C and induced psychological disorders.Results: Fourteen studies were included. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety and somatisation showed a significantly higher prevalence in women who have experienced FGM/C versus non-mutilated women. Female genital mutilation type II or III were identified as predictors of disorder severity. Qualitative studies showed a significant difference in the perception of FGM/C between immigrant and non-immigrant women, as well as the multidimensional nature of the factors influencing disorders’ onsets.Conclusion: Our study showed a high association of FGM/C (and its degree of severity) with psychological disorders such as PTSD, depression, anxiety and somatisation. It also illustrates contextual factors, including socio-cultural factors that may influence the intensity of these psychological disorders.Clinical implications: It is important for health professionals to be aware of the psychological consequences of FGM/C and the different factors influencing FGM/C perception. Indeed, a feeling of ‘Being abnormal’ can be awakened among patients because of health professionals’ incorrect behaviours.
Publisher AOSIS
Contributor N/A
Date 2023-07-07
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion — mix methods
Format text/html application/epub+zip text/xml application/pdf
Identifier 10.4102/sajp.v79i1.1877
Source South African Journal of Physiotherapy; Vol 79, No 1 (2023); 7 pages 2410-8219 0379-6175
Language eng
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Coverage all around the world N/A women
Rights Copyright (c) 2023 Tara Reman, Valerie Balligand, Benoit Schoefs, Veronique Feipel, Jeanne Bertuit