Thursday, 21 July 2011

Sexual satisfaction & circumcision: latest from IAS 2011

The International AIDS Society's 2011 meeting has now concluded, and — as is often the case these days — there some interesting presentations.

Of particular interest are two abstracts: Breda and Westercamp et al.

In Uganda, Breda reports on a study of 316 adult circumcision patients:
Compared to before circumcision, 87.7% (193/220) reported ease of reaching orgasm as “better”; 92.3% reported sexual satisfaction as “better”; 97.7% and 95.4% were satisfied with and thought their partners satisfied with their appearance, respectively.

In Kenya, Westercamp et al reported on a study of 1016 adult circumcision patients:
Men reported a higher overall level of satisfaction with intercourse after circumcision (71% vs. 87%, p< 0.0001). 54% of men reported their penis being much more sensitive and 36% reported reaching orgasm much more easily 6 months after circumcision.

Also, sexual dysfunctions (for two weeks or more) decreased:
inability to climax (20% vs. 16%, p=0.007), finding sex not pleasurable (31% vs. 24%, p=0.0005), and lack of interest in sex (45% vs. 39%, p=0.008).

And fewer penile traumas were reported (consistent with Mehta et al):
At 6 months, men reported experiencing fewer problems with reproductive health in the last 6 months compared to baseline: painful urination (10% before vs. 7%, p=0.008), difficulty passing urine (7% vs. 4%, p=0.01), and sores around genitals (7% vs. 4%, p=0.002). Similar reductions were found in measures of penile trauma in the preceding 6 months: pain during intercourse (15% vs. 8%, p< 0.0001); scratches, cuts, abrasions during sex (24% vs. 6%, p< 0.0001); and bleeding during or after intercourse (10% vs. 3%, p< 0.0001).

These studies add to the growing body of evidence showing that circumcision does not harm, and may well improve men's sexual experience.

As far as I can tell, neither study reports on RCT data; instead, both report on prospective study of patients circumcised as part of subsequent circumcision programmes in the same locations. Hopefully both studies will be published soon.

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