Monday, November 16, 2009

First, Last, and Only Line of Defense?

So there is this article about a study done 965 men in Uganda that concluded that men with larger foreskins were more likely to contract AIDS virus. It is believed that the "foreskin has many immune cells called dendritic cells, which may provide a route into the body for the virus."

Well par for the course when there is a bit of evidence that the foreskin may increase risk for contracting AIDS they go for the old "chop it off!" solution.

Here's the thing. Did this study by chance evaluate the genital hygiene and sex education of those 965 men? Perhaps they don't realize that keeping their penises clean and being aware of sexually transmitted diseases could decrease the risk as well. But I doubt that. These days it seems like people are just aching for a chance to cut foreskin when they can.

I would really like to see some evidence that proper sexual education and genital hygiene are so incredibly ineffective in preventing the transmission of AIDS to these men that something as serious as circumcision is the only resort (which is how a lot of folks are treating it these days). In most cases of most illnesses the removal of body parts is usually the very last resort when all other options have been exhausted. Except in this case in which circumcision is being touted by some as the first and only resort.

Why is that?


David K. said...

Why is that?
It's cheap - like the budgie...
and unlike education programs and condom give-aways - both of which are much more effective if you have the money for them.

Danny said...

Yeah that may be why.

Toysoldier said...

I am rather surprised that the researchers jumped to the conclusion that large foreskin increased the risk without bothering to check with the men's general level of hygiene. It is possible they did and it simply was not supported, but I doubt that is the case since that factor would lead the researchers to a much different conclusion. This sounds more like a rush to prevent AIDS/HIV infections by any means, even if the means makes no logical sense.