Women's perceptions and experiences of post-operative physiotherapy management at an Obstetric Fistula Center in Eldoret, Kenya
Muia, Catherine Mwikali
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Post-operative physiotherapy plays a vital role in the management of patients with incontinence in order to optimise the outcome of obstetric fistula surgery. Women who suffer residual urinary incontinence continue to experience shame, social isolation and institutional rejection. Incontinence continues to impair them leading to lower levels of role participation and restriction in most activities. Gynocare Fistula Center, Eldoret, receives a number of referrals for women with obstetric fistula requiring surgical and physiotherapy care. Many studies have focused on the determinants of surgical outcomes and social reintegration but none have focused on woman's perceptions and experiences with postoperative physiotherapy. While continence is not always achieved immediately after surgery, this study was designed to explore women's perceptions and experience of postoperative physiotherapy management at an obstetric fistula center in Eldoret,Kenya. Participants were then asked about their experiences and related perceptions and perceived challenges regarding the physiotherapy service following discharge from the Center. An explorative qualitative method was used to explore the women's perceptions and experiences of the post-operative physiotherapy management, as well as their perceived challenges regarding access to physiotherapy post discharge.