BACKGROUND: The prevention and treatment of obstetric fistula still remains a concern and a challenge in low income countries. The objective of this study was to estimate the overall proportions of failure of fistula closure and incontinence among women undergoing repair for obstetric fistula in Guinea and identify its associated factors.
METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort study using data extracted from medical records of fistula repairs between 1 January 2012 and 30 September 2013. The outcome was the failure of fistula closure and incontinence at hospital discharge evaluated by a dye test. A sub-sample of women with vesicovaginal fistula was used to identify the factors associated with these outcomes.
RESULTS: Overall, 109 women out of 754 (14.5 %; 95 % CI:11.9-17.0) unsuccessful repaired fistula at discharge and 132 (17.5 %; 95 % CI:14.8-20.2) were not continent. Failure of fistula closure was associated with vaginal delivery (AOR: 1.9; 95 % CI: 1.0-3.6), partially (AOR: 2.0; 95 % CI: 1.1-5.6) or totally damaged urethra (AOR: 5.9; 95 % CI: 2.9-12.3) and surgical repair at Jean Paul II Hospital (AOR: 2.5; 95 % CI: 1.2-4.9). Women who had a partially damaged urethra (AOR: 2.5; 95 % CI: 1.5-4.4) or a totally damaged urethra (AOR: 6.3; 95 % CI: 3.0-13.0) were more likely to experience post-repair urinary incontinence than women who had their urethra intact.
CONCLUSION: At programmatic level in Guinea, caution should be paid to the repair of women who present with a damaged urethra and those who delivered vaginally as they carry greater risks of experiencing a failure of fistula closure and incontinence.