PESHAWAR, May 25: The Pakistan National Forum on Women Health (PNFWH), a Karachi-based welfare organisation, will to a two-day camp at the Lady Reading Hospital here from Friday to operate and cure women suffering from fistula, a disease developed during the first delivery and considered as incurable.
Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, Dr Kaneez Fatima of the Sindh Government Qatar Hospital, Karachi, said that in Pakistan at least 30,000 women die each year during delivery.
She said about 400,000 women faced post-delivery complications in the country, adding one such complication is fistula, which is a huge problem that women have to face.
In fistula, women cannot control continuous urine excretion. They also had to endure the loss of their newborn baby, she said.
“These women suffer from depression, and their husbands seek separation. No man likes to live with a woman suffering from fistula,” she said.
She said that life becomes a hell for such women, who also consider themselves filthy, adding that they can neither perform prayers nor maintain social routine.
She said that these women spend all their life as destitutes.
Dr Kaneez said that according to a rough estimate at least 50,000 women across the country are suffering from fistula, adding that all sufferers of fistula belong to poor segments of the society because they lack basic facilities during pregnancy.
She said: “This disease is curable. The Pakistan National Forum on Women Health in collaboration with the UNFPA has started a campaign against fistula.
“The campaign consists of two stages. In the fist stage, the PNFWH is trying to control further increase of fistula, which is spreading among women. Family members, particularly husbands, should take special care of pregnant women.
‘‘If a delivery case is prolonged for more than 12 hours, the woman should be taken to a hospital where the facility of operation is available. In the second stage, fistula patients are treated. So far only four centres have been established across the country where operation facility for fistula patients is available.”
She said: “The camp being started in the Lady Reading Hospital here is a step towards curing fistula patients.
“In the camp, patients coming from across the Frontier province will be operated and we hope that all patients will return to their homes perfectly all right.”
She said that this is the third camp of its nature staged here during the past six months.
Also present at the press conference were Dr Aisha Haq and Karachi-based gynaecologist and secretary general of the Pakistan Medical Association Dr Sher Shah Syed.