In Bangladesh there are 20,000 women in need of fistula repair surgery
Each year new cases of fistula develop
Obstetric fistula is a hole in the birth canal caused due to prolonged obstructed labor when prompt medical intervention such as emergency Caesarean section is not available. This happens because of tissue damages from pressure of the baby to mother’s internal organs inside her pelvis. The hole can be between the vagina and rectum, ureter, or bladder.
A fistula can result in incontinence of urine or feces. The foul smell due to constant leaking of urine, stool or both, is humiliating. As a result, the women become socially isolated and pushed away by family and friends. If left untreated, fistula can lead to chronic medical problems including ulcerations, kidney disease, and nerve damage in the legs, as well as psychosocial and emotional health problems.
In most cases women have a stillborn baby. The woman is usually not able to bear children anymore, nor capable of engaging in sexual activities and they are usually left by her husband or partner.
Surgery can repair the injury. Sadly, most women with the condition do not know that treatment is available, and most times they cannot afford it.
Obstetric Fistula Surgeon:
Dr. Nrinmoy Biswas,
HOPE Fistula Surgeon
Since 2011 HOPE Foundation, through our long-trusted partner Fistula Foundation, has provided obstetric fistula repair surgery free of charge to the women of Cox’s Bazar. HOPE has a International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) trained fistula surgeon and expects to expand our gold standard health practices with a team of highly skilled and dedicated professionals in the first 75-bed HOPE Maternal and Fistula Center by 2021. Because of HOPE's experience and strong relationship with the community, we've successfully reached many women in desperate need of medical care.
HOPE Fistula Patient
Ayesha is in her early 20's but looks as though she is too young to have devastating Fistula story. Her story starts when she immediately became pregnant after being arranged to marry at only 12-years-old. After suffering long days in labor at home, a traditional birth attendant delivered her deceased baby. A week later she noticed her urinary incontinence would not end and after being divorced by her husband, she was sent back to her parents' home. Her family has supported her to have her condition repaired which was unsuccessful 10 times. Today at the age of 23-years-old and a rewarding Obstetric Fistula surgery with HOPE Foundation, Ayesha now has a new story.
HOPE Fistula Patient
After facing challenges, Ziddika has a gentle way of carrying herself and still smiles most of the time even when she talks. She developed Fistula in 2014 when she was pregnant at 15 years old and married a year before. Unfortunately, Ziddika gave birth to a deceased child and was sent back to her family three days later after her mother-in-law noticed her bowel troubles. In 2017, she migrated to Bangladesh with her mother as a Forcibly Displaced Myanmar National a night after her father was shot to living in the Rohingya Refugee Camp ever since. Today as a 20-year-old woman who had a successful Fistula surgery with HOPE, she says she's "ready to begin again," after suffering four previous failed surgeries.