Set in the poverty-stricken East End, Call The Midwife has tackled many difficult social topics.
And now it is to take on a subject that shocks even the hardy nurses on the show.
Tomorrow night, the pre-watershed drama will focus on a heavily pregnant Somali immigrant who is the victim of female genital mutilation.
The woman believes the barbaric procedure – which has left her unable to deliver a child naturally without risking her life – is normal because it is routinely practised on girls in her homeland.
But it is clear that her midwives and doctors have never seen anything like it. At one point, a midwife explains that the woman, Nadifa, has ‘nothing there but a scar from back to front’.