Tag Archives: Stretching labia minora*

Elongation of inner labia minora

Zambian Women in South Africa: Insights Into Health Experiences of Labia Elongation

Journal of Sex Research (iFirst). 10.1080/00224499.2014.1003027LME

Zambian Women in South Africa: Insights Into Health Experiences of Labia Elongation

G Martinez Perez, M Mubanga, C Tomás Aznar, B Bagnol


Labia minora elongation consists in the manual stretching of the inner lips of the external genitalia. This practice is documented in east and southern Africa. The experiences of African women in the diaspora practicing elongation are not thoroughly understood. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the health harms and benefits associated with this practice of Zambian women who have migrated to Cape Town, South Africa. Twenty women and seventeen men participated in this study. Between December 2013 and May 2014, in-depth interviews and natural group discussions were conducted with the participants. The focus of this article is to report on the emic of the women related to notions of health, hygiene, and well-being. Labial elongation is perceived as a practice involving minor, short-term adverse effects that can be prevented by following some basic hygiene. Overall, personal and social value is placed on this practice because of its reported benefits for the sexual health of men and women, and for women’s femininity and self-image. Further research is necessary on how female genital modifications influence Zambians’ sexual preferences to inform the development of culturally appropriate health promotion interventions.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Autoerotism, homoerotism, and foreplay in African women who practice labia minora elongation: a review


International Journal of Sexual Health.2014, 26(4): 314-328.LME

Autoerotism, homoerotism, and foreplay in African women who practice labia minora elongation: a review

Martínez Pérez G, Bagnol B, Tomás Aznar C


Labia minora elongation is a female genital modification that some women in certain linguistic groups from Africa engage in. One of the purposes is to enhance sexual pleasure for their male partners. The literature has been reviewed to describe how it serves for women to increase their sexual pleasure, both as an autoerotic method and in the context of homoerotic and heterosexual relationships. This aspect deserves to be investigated, as there are narratives from some women practitioners of labial elongation that this practice might contribute to improve the sexual health of some of the women who engage in it.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

The Practice of Puxa-Puxa among Mozambican Women: A Systematic Inventory of Motives.

J Sex Res. 2013 Aug 7. [Epub ahead of print] LME

The Practice of Puxa-Puxa among Mozambican Women: A Systematic Inventory of Motives.

Vera Cruz G, Mullet E.

Department of Psychology, Eduardo Mondlane University.


Puxa-puxa is the elongation of the labia minora of the genital organs. It is one of the most widespread genital practices among women in Mozambique, and the practice seems to be specific to this country. The motives underlying this practice and its abandonment were examined in a theory-driven way. A total of 616 women currently living in the provinces of Maputo, Zambezia, and Nampula, aged 18 to 62, were presented with one of two questionnaires that contained items about possible motives for practicing puxa-puxa or possible motives for not practicing it. Seven separable motives for practicing puxa-puxa were found, and the most highly rated were “Having a satisfying sexual life”; “Satisfying my sexual partner”; and “Gaining self-control.” Five separable motives for not practicing puxa-puxa were found, and the most highly rated were “Disliking a painful practice”; “Affirming one’s value as a person”; and “Avoiding contamination.” The main findings of the study are that the practice of puxa-puxa is associated with deep psychological motives common to most women in most cultures, namely having a satisfying sexual life with a reliable partner, creating the conditions for having children, and being able to care for them. The abandonment of this practice is largely the result of personal decisions, which are not taken under constraint and which are not exclusively taken from fear of illness.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Labia Minora Elongation and its implications on the health of women: A Systematic Review

Int J Sex Health. 2013. DOI:10.1080/19317611.2013.851139LME

Labia Minora Elongation and its implications on the health of women: A Systematic Review

Martínez Pérez G, Tomás Aznar C, Bagnol B


Labia Minora Elongation is a female genital modification practice categorized among the types included in the fourth group of female genital mutilation. In this paper we display the results of a systematic review of the evidence-based knowledge published on the health risks and benefits of Labia Minora Elongation as informed by African female respondents who are insiders of the practice. No other systematic review on this specific topic has been published before. A methodological bibliographic search was done in scientific databases, by manual referencing and by contacting experts on this area of knowledge. Seventeen papers turned out eligible for this review, which correspond to nine different studies. Eight of these studies were conducted in Eastern and Southern African countries and one was carried out in Italy. This review concludes that pain at the beginning of the practice, nuisances related to the use of caustic herbs, and stigmatization in failing to comply with the practice are the principal health risks associated to labia minora elongation. At the same time, there is evidence that labial elongation may benefit the sexual health and well being of women. More research of a quantitative nature is necessary to determine its prevalence across the practicing cultures and to precise its implications on the sexual and reproductive health for the women who engage in this female genital modification.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Labia minora elongation as understood by Baganda male and female adolescents in Uganda.

Cult Health Sex. 2013 Aug 1. [Epub ahead of print]LME

Labia minora elongation as understood by Baganda male and female adolescents in Uganda.

Martínez Pérez G, Namulondo H, Tomás Aznar C.

Department of Physiatrist and Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences , University of Zaragoza , Zaragoza , Spain.


Labia minora elongation is a common traditional female genital modification practice among the members of the Baganda ethnic group in Uganda. In 2002, a study carried out by the Padua Working Group on Female Genital Mutilation analysed how Baganda girls residing in Wakiso District graphically represented their experiences of labia minora elongation. In the present study, using the same methodology and in the same geographic setting 10 years later, we asked young men and women to prepare graphical representations of this rite. The purpose was to learn about how the practice is perceived and represented, describing the differences found in their testimonies, and comparing the findings with the former study. A total of 36 respondents (21 male and 15 female), aged between 9 and 15 years old participated in the study. The drawings were analysed using a three-themes analysis frame with a focus on setting, subject and operator. Differences were detected between how young women and men represented this practice. Educational interventions may be helpful to address the doubts, concerns, anxieties and misconceptions that Baganda youth may have concerning traditional genital practices.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Elongation of labia minora – Zambia

manena20.blogspot.com webpage. Sunday, December 07, 2008LME

Elongation of labia minora – Zambia

By Manena (author of the blog where this post is hosted)


I was browsing the web today and just now found out that elongation of labia minora is classified as Genital Mutilation type IV (where have I been?). So of course after my initial shock of “oh my God! I am mutilated!!!” abated… I had a few minutes to think and I have come to a conclusion on the subject. The researchers have erred.
History and Commentary:
Let me start by saying that the information contained herein will most likely upset/disconcert a lot of Zambians because we have trouble talking about our sexuality or sex in public places. Ritual/ traditional sexual matters are discussed in private among friends or at gender restricted traditional ceremonies.
The reason I feel strongly to speak on this subject is that as Zambian, we sometimes have a tendency to accept western standards as the norm, shunning our own cultures without much investigation other than the fact that it seems primitive. We often forget that when anthropologists come in from other countries to “study” us, they are not highly familiar with the language for a start, and the local people are not comfortable explaining everything or have trouble translating things to English. The evidence is clear in ChisunguA girl’s initiation ceremony among the Bemba of Zambiaby Audrey Richards.
Yes there are a lot of inconsistencies and traditional teaching that has been done the same way for ages that we have no idea why it’s done that way other than– it was passed on by our forefathers that way. You could say the same for many religious practices too. Unfortunately, unlike religion, our history is not written, but passes on through fables or partially true stories, through dance and song or a village elders romantic view of the past…

This post can be accessed in this LINK

ELONGATION: OKUKYALIRA ENSIKO, the Buganda way of enhancing sexual pleasure

Ekimeeza webpage. MAY 21, 2012 LME

ELONGATION: OKUKYALIRA ENSIKO, the Buganda way of enhancing sexual pleasure

(No author)


Humanity’s pursuit for merit is not restricted to the open. Even in utmost privacy, when the matter at hand is entirely the business of a secretive twosome, mankind has always sought to excel and impress.

To many men, performance must impress even if it means applying drugs as dangerous as Viagra, Levitra and Cialis. Many others have tried hazardous penis enlargement products. It is women, however, that have come up with the most creative and most awesome ways of enhancing their sexual performance.

In some cultures, glitters and jewels are applied down there to boost the area’s attractiveness. In parts of East and Central Africa women invented a sexual stimulus method that the people of Buganda came to know as Okukyalira ensiko.

This tradition of pulling and elongating the parts of the vagina variously known as labia minora, inner labia or inner lips enjoys pervasive reverence in central Uganda. In western Uganda, women of the Bahima clan used to make their labia minora long enough to cover the vaginal opening, raising barricades in the path of rapists. As members of the clan moved to towns and increasingly started wearing clothes following the 1986 change of government, the fear of rape went away with the modification of the vagina…

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Violated: Women’s Human Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa

Human Rights & Human Welfare Journal. Topical review Digest: Human Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa digest.

Violated: Women’s Human Rights in Sub-Saharan Africa

By Kathryn Birdwell Wester

EXTRACT: In contemporary sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), women are facing human rights abuses unparalleled elsewhere in the world. Despite the region’s diversity, its female inhabitants largely share experiences of sexual discrimination and abuse, intimate violence, political marginalization, and economic deprivation. Consider the following…

This report can be accessed for free in this LINK


The right to culture and the culture of rights: a critical perspective on women’s sexual rights in Africa

Feminist Legal Studies. Apr 2008 16(1):47 LMEFREE

The right to culture and the culture of rights: a critical perspective on women’s sexual rights in Africa

Tamale S


This paper can be accessed in this LINK


Women’s Sexuality as a Site of Control & Resistance: Views on the African Context

Keynote Address delivered at the International Conference on Bride price under the theme, “Coalition and Action to Safeguard Women and Children in the Family, “under the auspices of the Mifumi Project, February 17, 2004 at Makerere University, KampalaFREELME

Women’s Sexuality as a Site of Control & Resistance: Views on the African Context 

Tamale S

Faculty of Law – Makerere University


…Tutelage begun at puberty just before a girl starts menstruating, when she would “visit the bush” under the tutelage of her Ssenga.,24 Visiting the bush involves a procedure of stretching or elongating the labia minor of a woman. Traditionally, among the Baganda, the meaning attached to this cultural practice was a tightly kept secret that was associated with female enhanced arousal in foreplay. The purported and commonly touted meaning of the elongated labia was that they enhanced erotic pleasure of a man who came in sexual contact with them. Of course this practice was viewed through a completely different light by the imperialists who came across it. They perceived it as a barbaric mutilation of the female genitals and, today it has been condemned and classified as “Type IV FGM”!…

This conference paper can be accessed in this LINK