Global & Disaster Medicine

Archive for the ‘Women issues’ Category

Bangladesh: 12,764 new breast cancer patients are detected every year while the number of deaths from breast cancer is 6,846

Dhaka Tribune

“…..A recent survey of 246 patients by the National Institute of Cancer Research and Hospital medical oncology department,  social taboos and unawareness were the main reasons for unchecked breast cancer and delay in early detection.
The study found that 65.5% of breast cancer patients delayed their diagnosis by more than six months, although 83% of them found lumps in their breast  or had other symptoms of breast cancer…..”


Quantifying the burden, timing, and causes of maternal deaths, stillbirths, and neonatal deaths in south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.


Population-based rates, timing, and causes of maternal deaths, stillbirths, and neonatal deaths in south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa: a multi-country prospective cohort study


  • “……We identified 278 186 pregnancies and 263 563 births across the study sites, with outcomes ascertained for 269 630 (96·9%) pregnancies, including 8761 (3·2%) that ended in miscarriage or abortion.
  • Maternal mortality ratios in sub-Saharan Africa (351 per 100 000 livebirths, 95% CI 168–732) were similar to those in south Asia (336 per 100 000 livebirths, 247–458), with far greater variability within sites in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Stillbirth and neonatal mortality rates were approximately two times higher in sites in south Asia than in sub-Saharan Africa (stillbirths: 35·1 per 1000 births, 95% CI 28·5–43·1 vs 17·1 per 1000 births, 12·5–25·8; neonatal mortality: 43·0 per 1000 livebirths, 39·0–47·3 vs 20·1 per 1000 livebirths, 14·6–27·6).
  • 40–45% of pregnancy-related deaths, stillbirths, and neonatal deaths occurred during labour, delivery, and the 24 h postpartum period in both regions. Obstetric haemorrhage, non-obstetric complications, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and pregnancy-related infections accounted for more than three-quarters of maternal deaths and stillbirths.
  • The most common causes of neonatal deaths were perinatal asphyxia (40%, 95% CI 39–42, in south Asia; 34%, 32–36, in sub-Saharan Africa) and severe neonatal infections (35%, 34–36, in south Asia; 37%, 34–39 in sub-Saharan Africa), followed by complications of preterm birth (19%, 18–20, in south Asia; 24%, 22–26 in sub-Saharan Africa)…..”

Nobel Peace Prize Awarded To Fighters Against Sexual Slavery


…..Dr. Mukwege campaigned relentlessly to shine a spotlight on the plight of Congolese women, even after nearly being assassinated a few years ago. Ms. Murad, who was enslaved by the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, has told and retold her story of suffering to organizations around the world, helping to persuade the United States State Department to recognize the genocide of her people at the hands of the terrorist group…..”

Banning Tampons in Prisons


“……Virginia is suspending a newly introduced policy that would have barred women who visit inmates at state prisons from wearing tampons or menstrual cups……..The abrupt about-face comes a day after widespread media coverage of state prison officials’ plan to ban tampons starting next month as a way to prevent contraband from being smuggled into prisons……”

India: Arrest and jail time for Muslim men who terminate their marriages by simply uttering, “Talaq” 3 times.



Mastectomies surge in Venezuela due to unaffordability of 21st Century medical care


“…..Today’s standard treatments allow women to preserve their breasts through complementary chemotherapy, radiology, and hormonal treatments (for hormone-driven cancer). But Venezuela’s public health system no longer offers these treatments, and with the average Venezuelan earning $1 a month, they are out of reach for most. Surgeons are incredulous at the excessive number of mastectomies coming through their hospitals; at one facility, mastectomies are up 30-40% in 5 years.….”

2018: A year punctuated by brutal crimes against young girls in India.


The world’s most dangerous countries for women 2018

Rohingya: Babies conceived by rape in Myanmar are now being delivered in the camps.

NY Times

“……Everyone in the Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh knows of the rapes and how the Myanmar military has, for decades, used sexual violence as a weapon of war, particularly against ethnic groups that are not from the nation’s Buddhist majority.

They know that it is not the fault of the Rohingya women and girls, who were often gang-raped at gunpoint, their mothers, sisters or daughters sobbing and screaming nearby.

Nevertheless, in traditional Rohingya Muslim society, rape brings shame to households. Any resulting pregnancies are viewed as heaping even more disgrace on families, according to counselors working in the refugee camps……”

An official public health policy has been created to stop the practice of virginity testing from being performed in every clinic and hospital in Afghanistan.

The Guardian

  • Virginity testing was banned in 2016, but police have continued to pick up girls and women suspected of having sex, and take them to hospitals or clinics where they are forced to undergo a virginity test.
  • According to a 2016 Human Rights Watch report, almost half of all women incarcerated in Afghanistan – and 95% of girls in juvenile detention – are there for “moral crimes” such as sex before marriage.


WHO’s latest research: Heat-stable carbetocin is as safe and effective as oxytocin in preventing postpartum haemorrhage.


WHO study shows drug could save thousands of women’s lives

27 June 2018

News Release
A new formulation of a drug to prevent excessive bleeding following childbirth could save thousands of women’s lives in low- and lower-middle-income countries, according to a study led by the World Health Organization (WHO) in collaboration with MSD for Mothers and Ferring Pharmaceuticals.
Currently WHO recommends oxytocin as the first-choice drug for preventing excessive bleeding after childbirth. Oxytocin, however, must be stored and transported at 2–8 degrees Celsius, which is hard to do, in many countries, depriving many women of access to this lifesaving drug. When they can obtain it, the drug may be less effective because of heat exposure.

The study, published today in the New England Journal of Medicine, has shown an alternative drug – heat-stable carbetocin – to be as safe and effective as oxytocin in preventing postpartum haemorrhage. This new formulation of carbetocin does not require refrigeration and retains its efficacy for at least 3 years stored at 30 degrees celsius and 75% relative humidity.

“This is a truly encouraging new development that can revolutionize our ability to keep mothers and babies alive,” says Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO.

Approximately 70 000 women die every year because of post-partum haemorrhage – increasing the risk that their babies also die within one month.

The clinical trial, the largest of its kind, studied close to 30 000 women who gave birth vaginally in 10 countries: Argentina, Egypt, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, Uganda and the United Kingdom.

Each woman was randomly given a single injection of either heat-stable carbetocin or oxytocin immediately following the birth of her baby. The study found that both drugs were equally effective at preventing excessive bleeding after birth.

Since both drugs in the study were kept in at the temperatures required to ensure maximum efficacy of oxytocin, the trial may underestimate the benefit expected with heat-stable carbetocin use in real-life settings where oxytocin may have degraded due to exposure to higher temperatures.

“The development of a drug to prevent postpartum haemorrhage that continues to remain effective in hot and humid conditions is very good news for the millions of women who give birth in parts of the world without access to reliable refrigeration,” says Dr Metin Gülmezoglu, from the Department of Reproductive Health and Research at WHO.

The next step is regulatory review and approval by countries.

WHO will ask its Guideline Development Group to consider whether heat-stable carbetocin should be a recommended drug for the prevention of postpartum haemorrhage.

About the study

This WHO study, also referred to as the CHAMPION (Carbetocin HAeMorrhage PreventION) trial, was funded by MSD for Mothers. Heat-stable carbetocin was provided by Ferring Pharmaceuticals, the product innovator and oxytocin was provided by Novartis for the study. The study was conducted under a collaborative arrangement between WHO, MSD for Mothers and Ferring Pharmaceuticals. Following the positive results from the trial, the parties will now work to advance affordable access to this lifesaving drug in countries that have a high burden of maternal deaths.


Recent Posts