HAEMOPHILIA & CIRCUMCISION

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Circumcision reduces risk of herpes and HPV infection

March 26, 2009|By Amanda MacMillan

Men who are circumcised are less likely to get sexually transmitted infections such as genital herpes and human papillomavirus (HPV), but not syphilis, according to a study of adult African men published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The finding adds to the evidence that there are health benefits to circumcision. It was already known that circumcision can reduce the risk of penile cancer, a relatively rare disease. In a previous study, the same research team found that adult circumcision could reduce the risk of HIV infection.

Efforts to increase the practice of male circumcision in areas with high rates of sexually transmitted infections, including Africa, could have a tremendous benefit, say the study's authors. Genital herpes has been associated with an increased risk of HIV, and HPV can cause genital warts as well as a higher risk of anal, cervical (in women), and penile cancers. Health.com: Is your partner cheating? How to protect yourself

In the United States, infant circumcision is declining. About 64 percent of American male infants were circumcised in 1995, down from more than 90 percent in the 1970s. Rates tend to be higher in whites (81percent) than in blacks (65 percent) or Hispanics (54 percent).

Some opponents say the removal of the foreskin is an unnecessary surgical procedure that may reduce sexual sensitivity in adulthood. In Jewish and Muslim cultures, young or infant boys are routinely circumcised for religious reasons. Circumcision rates have traditionally been higher in the U.S. than in Europe, but the American Academy of Pediatrics currently says that the medical benefits are insufficient to recommend circumcision for all baby boys.

In the new study, a research team at the Rakai Health Sciences Program in Uganda -- in collaboration with researchers from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland, and Makerere University in Uganda -- conducted two clinical trials involving 3,393 uncircumcised men ages 15 to 49. All the men were negative for HIV and genital herpes (also known as herpes simplex virus type 2); a subgroup of men also tested negative for HPV.

Roughly half of the men underwent medically supervised circumcision at the start of the trial, while the other half were circumcised two years later.
 
 
Protesters against male circumcision in Vancouver this month. Photograph: Andy Clark/Reuters

"Circumcised Men Take Longer to Reach Ejaculation, but That May Be OK"

Adult circumcision affects a guy's sexual performance -- but not in a bad way, according to a new study.

Circumcised men take longer to reach ejaculation, which can be viewed as "an advantage, rather than a 

complication," writes lead researcher Temucin Senkul

"When is Adult Circumcision Necessary"

Adult circumcision is not uncommon, though its also not something a doctor will advise unless a man is experiencing certain health problems, such as balanoposthitis, inflammation of the head of the penis and overlying foreskin, or phimosis, difficulty retracting the foreskin. Both problems are seen more commonly in diabetics, but can occur in any uncircumcised man. They are caused by chronic irritation and scarring and can usually be prevented with careful cleaning beneath the foreskin

Circumcised Now For Your Future Health!!

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