Tuesday 16 March 2021
Nowadays, in our developed countries, giving birth is no longer a scary thing for expectant mothers. They know that they will receive all the care they need and that they will be adequately taken care of if complications arise. The situation is not the same in countries with weak or under-resourced health systems. There, it is common that in particularly long and complicated deliveries, and in the absence of adequate obstetric care, pregnant women suffer serious internal injuries, with disastrous consequences for their lives afterwards.
This is what happened to Severina, who lives in South Sudan, after a difficult delivery:
"I am 17 years old and when the problems developed, I was rejected by everyone. I left school, hid at my mother's house and didn't dare to show my face in the village or participate in activities like other young women do," she explains.
During her delivery, her baby put excessive pressure on her internal organs for a very long time. Due to the difficult delivery and the fact that a caesarean section could not be performed, the baby unfortunately did not survive. As for the young mother, she began to suffer from permanent incontinence, chronic urinary tract infections and many other serious disorders that could have led to her death as well.
Because these injuries caused by childbirth and their consequences are still one of the main causes of maternal mortality.
In countries at war or where obstetric services are lacking, these post-partum problems are most common among young girls who were married too young to be able to give birth without difficulty, when a caesarean section cannot be performed. In addition to the physical problems they face, women with this condition also face - as Severina did - stigma and social discrimination.
However, this problem is not irreversible: surgical interventions can repair the damaged tissue so that young women can live normally again.
Thanks to Caritas Luxembourg, Severina was able to benefit from this reconstructive surgery, as well as from post-operative rehabilitation sessions.
"Thanks to this operation, my incontinence problems have disappeared. I don't feel bad anymore, I have regained my self-confidence, I can go out now and I don't have to hide anymore. My life has changed completely," she says.
In addition to reconstructive surgeries, Caritas Luxembourg also runs awareness campaigns in South Sudan and encourages women to attend prenatal consultations to reduce the risk of complications during childbirth.
More than two million women and girls worldwide are currently living with this problem. In South Sudan, Caritas Luxembourg needs your support to be able to treat those who suffer from it. Do something today and make a lasting difference to the lives of one of these women.
For example :
- with €30, you support a home visit by a nurse
- with €50, you provide a hygiene kit to a patient discharged from hospital
- with €120, you enable a patient to receive 3 days of post-operative care in hospital
Every gesture counts.
Thank you for your generosity!
"I would like to help other women who suffer from the same problem as me, and convince them to have an operation. And of course, I would like to go back to school which I had to stop!