Lessons From the Developing World: Obstructed Labor and the Vesico-Vaginal Fistula

Julia Cron, MD

In This Article


In their work characterizing the obstructed labor complex, Arrowsmith, Hamlin, and Wall[9] emphasize that "obstructed labor is one of the greatest unaddressed healthcare needs for the women of this planet. It should not be allowed to remain so." This is a most important women's healthcare issue. One must understand the historical context of obstructed labor and the obstetric fistula, the societal complexities, and biological factors surrounding the current epidemic, and the surgical principles that govern fistula repair. With a better understanding of these issues, we can begin to address the problem and work to improve the healthcare status of women around the world.


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