Objective: To investigate the sexual quality of life of women who have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM) and compare them with a similar group who has not undergone FGM.
Design: Case-control study.
Setting: A large central London teaching hospital.
Population: A total of 73 women who had undergone FGM and 37 control women, who had not undergone FGM but were from a similar cultural background where FGM is practiced.
Methods: The women completed a questionnaire containing the Sexual Quality of Life-Female (SQOL-F) questionnaire.
Main outcome measures: SQOL-F score.
Results: Women who have undergone FGM of any type have a significantly lower (P < 0.001) overall SQOL-F score than control women (mean = 62.44, SD = 27.93 versus mean = 88.84, SD = 13.73). Women who were sexually active and had undergone FGM type III differed the most from sexually active controls (P < 0.05) in their SQOL-F score. Women who were sexually inactive but who had undergone FGM reported significantly lower overall SQOL-F scores (P = 0.015) than sexually inactive controls, but were not differentiated by type of FGM.
Conclusion: FGM significantly reduces women's sexual quality of life, based on the results of the SQOL-F questionnaire.
© 2012 The Authors BJOG An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology © 2012 RCOG.