Clinical update

Female genital mutilation

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines female genital mutilation (FGM) as procedures that involve partial or total removal or other injury to female genitalia for non-medical reasons.

Essential facts

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines female genital mutilation (FGM) as procedures that involve partial or total removal or other injury to female genitalia for non-medical reasons. As many as 140 million girls and women worldwide have been affected by the most common types of mutilation, says the WHO. According to the Foundation for Women’s Health Research and Development, 137,000 girls and women in the UK are living with the consequences of FGM, and 60,000 girls are at risk.

Picture credit: Corbis

According to research carried out by City University London and Equality Now, no local authority area in England or Wales is likely to be free of FGM. Published in July, its other key findings are that London has the highest city prevalence, with an estimated 2.1% of women affected. Outside the capital, the highest estimates were in Manchester, Slough, Bristol,

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