Intended for healthcare professionals


FGM: surgeons who do cosmetic genital surgery may risk prosecution

BMJ 2019; 367 doi: (Published 18 October 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;367:l6094
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. The BMJ

Surgeons who perform cosmetic genital operations such as labiaplasty should take steps to ensure that they are not risking prosecution for female genital mutilation, in the light of new guidance from the Crown Prosecution Service.1

Increasingly popular “designer vagina” operations are likely “in theory” to fall under the definition of female genital mutilation, which was first made a criminal offence in 1985, the CPS has said, because they involve excising labial tissue. In 2003 the Female Genital Mutilation Act increased the maximum penalty for female genital mutilation to 14 years in prison.

The guidance for crown prosecutors outlines factors to be weighed up in deciding …

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