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Team Members:
  • Erika Bhadra
  • Kevin Gorman
  • Pranavi Pallinti
  • Chi Chiung Grace Chen, MD
  • Laura Keyser, DPT, MPH
  • Elizabeth Logsdon, PhD
  • Soumyadipta Acharya, MD, PhD
  • Tom Benassi
  • Sarah Lee
  • Bailey Surtees
  • Namratha Potharaj


More than 2 million women in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia suffer from an obstetric fistula, which is an abnormal hole that develops between the genital and urinary tracts as the result of prolonged, obstructed labor with the absence of timely effective medical care. The primary symptom of this condition is urinary incontinence, as urine is no longer contained in the bladder and instead flows freely through the vaginal canal. While urinary incontinence has many physical effects such as odor, skin irritation, and even nerve damage, this condition extends far beyond physical effects. These women are unable to perform daily life tasks, are ostracized by their families and communities, and often have increased rates of depression and suicide. Surgical treatment exists, but remains limited due to increased demand, a lack of trained surgeons and facilities, and cost barriers. Currently, humanitarian organizations are focusing their efforts on the front end by raising funds to go towards prevention efforts and surgical treatments. As those who remain untreated continue to experience severe urinary incontinence, an affordable, easy-to-use device thatdiscreetly contains and redirects unwanted leakage of fluids would temporarily mitigate the social distress associated with obstetric fistula until patients can afford to present for treatment. Our team is developing this solution with a specific need in mind: Women with obstetric fistulas in low- resource settings need a method to minimize uncontrolled urine flow to alleviate social distress caused by physical symptoms. Like many other organizations in this field, ObstetriCare supports aholistic approach to care. While our solution is management-based, we  acknowledge the need for both prevention and treatment efforts as well, and therefore hope to partner with fistula hospitals and humanitarian organizations to effectively distribute our product and get it into the hands of the end user. Though we hope that we can live in a world one day where obstetric fistulas no longer exist, for now our team is dedicated to easing the burden of this devastating condition.

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