The study aimed to investigate women’s mental health status with FGM/C and compare it with that of a similar group of women without FGM/C.

A case–control study was carried out in 2018 among 122 women with FGM/C and 125 women without FGM/C referred to one of the available health service centers in Kermanshah Province, western Iran. A multivariate logistic model with ORs was used to determine the relationship of independent variables with the outcome variable, mental health status.

The mean age of the FGM/C and control groups was 35.7 and 31.3 (SD 7.2) years, respectively. According to the GHQ-28 questionnaire, 65.6% of the FGM/C group and 52% of the control group had a mental health disorder; the difference between them was statistically significant. The prevalence of severe depression in the FGM/C group was significantly higher than in the control group. Multivariate logistic regression showed that having a history of FGM/C and being in employment had a significant effect on presenting symptoms of a mental health disorder.

The study concluded that women who suffer from FGM/C are more vulnerable to mental health disorders such as depression.