COR NTD | What is FGS and how does research help tackle it?

12 Jun 2023

In this video COR-NTD and UK Aid from the UK government describe female genital schistosomiasis. Not only is this disease life-altering and stigmatizing, but it’s also preventable. This video highlights the crucial role of research in tackling FGS.

Female genital schistosomiasis, or FGS, is a disease that impacts women and adolescent girls, living in areas where schistosomiasis is prevalent in sub-Saharan Africa. Schistosomiasis is a parasitic infection that is transmitted by snails found in freshwater. Women are exposed to immature stages of this parasite when they go about their daily chores like bathing children or washing clothing. The parasite penetrates their skin, and over time, if they’re not treated, the eggs released from adult parasites can deposit into their genital and reproductive tracts. This can lead to itching, pain, and in some cases, even infertility. To make matters worse, when women seek care for the symptoms they’re experiencing, they can be misdiagnosed as having a sexually transmitted infection based on their symptoms when in fact, it’s just a result of their exposure to a local water source. Through the support of U.K. Aid from the U.K. government, the Coalition for Operational Research on Neglected Tropical Diseases, has created this video to increase awareness of FGS. Research partners discuss what research is being performed to combat this disease.

COR-NTD partners are working together to increase awareness of female genital schistosomiasis and to help to eliminate the disease. Work has begun to move the needle on these measures. What's next and what can you do to help?

Female Genital Schistosomiasis FIG