Vesico Vaginal Fistula - Medical Negligence Compensation Claim Solicitors


Vesicovaginal fistula ('VVF') is a subtype of female urogenital fistula or UGF. It is a hole or tract occurring between the bladder and the vagina, which results in urine being discharged from the vagina. A woman may have one or multiple VVFs.

This is a very distressing condition and can have a serious effect on a woman's overall well-being. The largest concern with this condition, if it is not surgically repaired, is the constant presence of urine in the vagina causes not only a permanent leaking, but it leads to serious infection and a continuous fetid discharge. This, in turn, manifests in physical discomfort and pain, emotional debilitation and social exclusion.

This condition is caused by prolonged obstructed labour which occurs when a baby's head is lodged in the pelvis, causing the blood supply to the surrounding area to be cut off and tissue death results. It can also happen when a mother is attempting an unattended breach birth. The baby is always born dead and, if the mother does not subsequently die, often the damage is so severe she is unable to recover her reproductive health. Dire consequences include kidney disease and failure from an untreated or infected VVF.

Victims who have endured and survived prolonged neglected labour and childbirth, in addition to vesicovaginal fistula, can develop nerve damage which produces reduced mobility. Naturally, this initiates physical and mental problems from which the women often never fully recovers.

This condition is often the result of medical negligence. If you are suffering from a Vesico vaginal fistula it is important that you discuss the cause and treatment with a medical negligence solicitor as soon as possible. Our solicitors operate the no win no fee* scheme otherwise known as a conditional fee agreement. If you would like advice from a specialist medical negligence solicitor without further any obligation just use the helpline or contact our solicitors offices by email. There is no charge for our initial advice and you are under no further obligation to use our legal services.

Contributing Factors


    Outlet obstruction (scarring due to female circumcision) is sometimes encountered in those cultures in which this practice is common and could be a contributing factor to obstructive labour.

    Female circumcision is illegal in UK; however, emigration and adoption of children from countries where the practice is customary means girls who have undergone female genital mutilation are present to a degree in UK.


    Poverty, especially in rural areas, has been shown to have a negative influence on the occurrence of VVFs. The length of travel to medical care can put a labouring mother at increased risk of VVF.


    Girls who become pregnant at a very young age before the pelvis is fully developed are at risk for VVF. This can result in the pelvis being too small to allow for the safe delivery of the baby. This may cause protracted labour and excessive pressure placed on the pelvic floor.

    Physical Development

    Another cause is the effects of incomplete bone development.

    Yet another reason can be incompatibility between the size of the male and female, producing a baby too large for the mother to deliver.

    Surgical Procedures

    Injuries inflicted upon the bladder during surgical procedures may cause VVF. The most common injuries result from caesarean section deliveries, forceps delivery, hysterectomies and vaginal repairs.


    Unsafe abortion practices can be responsible for VVFs.

VVF Repair

VVF repair is possible through a number of surgical techniques. The specific technique is chosen based on the location of the VVF. The success rate for surgical repair is excellent, provided the repair is corrected during the first operation.


VVF is no longer a prevalent medical condition in developed countries, but still has not been completely eradicated.

The main form of prevention of vesicovaginal fistula is emergency medical intervention and health care professionals trained to be alert to conditions that cause vesicovaginal fistula.

Assisted delivery, using surgical procedures such as forceps, vacuum extraction (using a vacuum pad on the baby's head to ease it out) and caesarean section (cutting through the abdominal wall to remove the baby), have greatly reduced the number of VVFs.


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The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here