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Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2009 Oct;107(1):12-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ijgo.2009.05.019. Epub 2009 Jul 9.

Risk factors for obstetric fistula in the Far North Province of Cameroon.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Provincial Hospital, Maroua, Cameroon.



To describe the circumstances of occurrence and identify potential risk factors for obstetric fistula in northern Cameroon.


A case series study of 42 obstetric fistula patients seeking services at the Provincial Hospital of Maroua, Cameroon, between May 2005 and August 2007. Structured interviews were conducted prior to surgical intervention.


Among obstetric fistula patients, 60% had lived with obstetric fistula for more than 5 years at the time of surgery. Eighty-one percent of patients had received no formal education and 86% were teenagers at their first delivery. Regarding the pregnancy and delivery preceding the occurrence of the fistula, 50% of women reported that they had received no prenatal care and 76% were in labor for more than 12 hours. The majority (83%) of women delivered a stillborn baby.


Obstetric fistula patients in the Far North Province of Cameroon had a low level of education, were married at a young age, and had poor access to quality maternal healthcare services.

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