When Peninah Mamayi got her period last January, she was scared, confused and embarrassed. But like thousands of other girls in the developing world who experience menarche having no idea what menstruation is, Mamayi, who lives with her sister-in-law in a village in Tororo, eastern Uganda, kept quiet.
Magda Ibrahim first learnt that she had endometrial cancer when she went to a clinic to diagnose recurring bladder pain and an abnormal menstrual discharge. Unable to afford the recommended hospital treatment, the uninsured 53-year-old widow turned to what she hoped would be a quicker and cheaper therapy.
Women’s rights activists in the Gambia are insisting that more than 30 years of campaigning to raise awareness should be sufficient to move the government to outlaw female genital mutilation (FMG).
As the United Nations continues negotiations on a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for its post-2015 development agenda, population experts are hoping reproductive health will be given significant recognition in the final line-up of the goals later this year.
Fifteen-year-old Nasreen Jehan, a student in the eastern Indian state of Bihar, proudly flaunts a yellow and red beaded bracelet encircling her wrist. This humble accessory, she tells IPS, is her most treasured possession.
The young couple inspecting Dr Bassem Elhelw’s Cairo Fertility Clinic knew what they wanted from him: a baby boy. They also knew they wanted the child by in vitro fertilisation (IVF).
When the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) participates in a regional review conference in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo next week, it will take stock of the successes and failures of a wide range of gender-related issues, including reproductive health, sexual violence, women's rights, maternal mortality, and the spread of HIV/AIDS – all of them relating to Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).
Among the many issues bringing protestors together at Gezi Park, the now-iconic site of struggle in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, is the demand for women’s liberation.
A 25-year-old mother of five hailing from Senegal’s eastern Tambacounda province believes that contraceptives damage the womb and cause health problems in the long term, such as a rise in blood pressure and chronic headaches.
Despite staggering advances in medical science and technology over the years, women around the world continue to suffer gravely as a result of inadequate access to basic reproductive health services.
In 1996, Maria Mamerita Mestanza Chavez, a 33-year-old Peruvian mother of seven, was threatened with imprisonment if she did not comply with the government policy of undergoing sterilisation. After suffering post-operative complications for which she was refused treatment, Chavez died nine days later.
When Philippines President Benigno Aquino III delivered his annual state of the union address in July, he appealed to the country’s lawmakers to break a deadlock on progressive birth control laws in this predominantly Catholic nation.
At the Kakonko Health Centre, about 250 kilometres from the nearest hospital in Kigoma Region, Western Tanzania, assistant medical officer Abdu Mapinduzi prepares to operate on Joanitha, a young pregnant mother.
Each year, 16 million girls aged 15-19 give birth. 50,000 of them die from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. And 95 percent of those births occur in developing countries.
In the remote, dusty and barren area of northern Port-au-Prince, Cannon Camp houses nearly 6,000 displaced Haitians in tiny and cramped spaces. Nestled among the smattering of tents is the home of a 50-something-year-old mother of 12.