There is a passage which is frequented used to defend Female Circumcision. It is attributed to "female gynaecologist Sitt al-Banaat Khaalid" from an article entitled "Khitaan al-Banaat Ru’yah Sihhiyyah (Female circumcision from a health point of view)".

It contains many religious and opinion-based arguments, but it also states:

[Female Circumcision] reduces the incidence of urinary tract infections


With regard to the type of female circumcision which involves removal of the prepuce of the clitoris, which is similar to male circumcision, no harmful health effects have been noted.

This quote is from Islamqa.info, but it can be similarly be found on many other sites.

Does any form of female circumcision reduce urinary tract infections?

  • 3
    People, female circumcision is a small subset of FGM. Let's not generalize and build strawmen.
    – Sklivvz
    May 8, 2017 at 23:56
  • @Sklivvz Note that the quote you added about the removal of the prepuce not causing harm is attributed to a 1979 book by the WHO and stands in no direct relation to the UTI claim in question (it especially is not part of the claim by Khaalid). Note also that it talks about the "type of circumcision", because there are indeed other types (all types of FGM were called circumcision in the past, and are still by some proponents of the practice). I agree that a full answer would ideally contain multiple peer-reviewed studies for each type of circumcision and UTIs, but those do not seem to exist.
    – tim
    May 10, 2017 at 8:47
  • 2
    I doubt you'd get much meaningful data on this because the kind of nations that practice FGM are also the kind of nations that aren't all that interested on collecting much data on female health
    – GordonM
    May 10, 2017 at 11:15

1 Answer 1



The WHO has a list of health risks associated with FGM:

Long-term health risks from Types I, II and III (occurring at any time during life)


Urinary tract infections: If not treated, such infections can ascend to the kidneys, potentially resulting in renal failure, septicaemia and death. An increased risk for repeated urinary tract infections is well documented in both girls and adult women.

There are also various studies that show that Type 3 FGM specifically can result in increased risk of UTIs (1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

Health benefits in general

Various organizations have also stated that no form of FGM has any health benefits - which would include UTIs -:

The WHO states:

The procedure has no health benefits for girls and women.

The NHS states:

There are no health benefits of FGM.

The USCIS states:

The practice has no health benefits and can lead to a range of serious physical and mental health problems.

  • 2
    "no health benefits" is a very strong claim I hope these organisations have a load of evidence to back it up.
    – Jonathon
    May 8, 2017 at 17:22
  • 5
    @JonathonWisnoski they do. Just read the links of this question, and those are far from a exaustive literature search. May 8, 2017 at 18:04
  • 4
    @PoloHoleSet it's perfectly possible to "prove a negative" once it's well defined (which it is, in this case).
    – Sklivvz
    May 8, 2017 at 23:50
  • 4
    Tim, FGM is not female circumcision, female circumcision is "type 1" in the WHO classification (the "very rare" removal of the prepuce). See on the IslamQA page: "With regard to the type of female circumcision which involves removal of the prepuce of the clitoris, which is similar to male circumcision, no harmful health effects have been noted." As such your answer is not addressing the claim.
    – Sklivvz
    May 8, 2017 at 23:58
  • 3
    @tim "proponents" is a broad generalization. Clearly, as I've shown, the "proponents" of this claim disagree on other types of mutilation, so I don't see why your answer should focus on them.
    – Sklivvz
    May 9, 2017 at 7:44

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