Is there an association between female circumcision and perinatal death?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


OBJECTIVE: In Sweden, a country with high standards of obstetric care, the high rate of perinatal mortality among children of immigrant women from the Horn of Africa raises the question of whether there is an association between female circumcision and perinatal death.
METHODS: To investigate this, we examined a cohort of 63 perinatal deaths of infants born in Sweden over the period 1990–96 to circumcised women.
FINDINGS: We found no evidence that female circumcision was related to perinatal death. Obstructed or prolonged labour, caused by scar tissue from circumcision, was not found to have any impact on the number of perinatal deaths.
CONCLUSION: The results do not support previous conclusions that genital circumcision is related to perinatal death, regardless of other circumstances, and suggest that other, suboptimal factors contribute to perinatal death among circumcised migrant women.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
  • Environmental Health and Occupational Health


  • Non-U.S. Gov't, Support, Risk Factors, Pregnancy, Labor Complications: ethnology, Infant Mortality, Female: adverse effects, Human, Female, Emigration and Immigration, Infant, Cohort Studies, Africa, Sweden: epidemiology, Eastern: ethnology, Circumcision, Adult
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)629-632
JournalBulletin of the World Health Organization
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch

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Related research output

Birgitta Essén, 2001, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lund University. 163 p.

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (compilation)

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