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HIV Risk Reduced With Male Genital Hygiene

New York: A latest report published in the September issue of Journal of AIDS, has established the importance of ensuring regular genital hygiene in males//, which goes a long way in reducing the risk of contracting HIV infection. Previous studies have shown reduction in HIV rates with male circumcision.

Dr. Nigel O'Farrell and a team from Ealing Hospital in London observed the presence of "subpreputial penile wetness," under the foreskin of most uncircumcised men, likely to cause infection.

To understand the link, researchers examined the clinical reports of 386 uncircumcised men who did not suffer any genital lesions or discharge. Upon examination of these subjects, Physicians observed that in nearly 80 percent of the cases, there was a minimal wetness around the penis. Surprisingly, only one out of 36 circumcised men, they saw, really had wetness.

Further researchers observed that HIV infection was 66.3 percent prevalent in the men who had penile wetness, as against 45.9 percent in men who had no wetness. It was also observed that the extent of wetness did not have any bearing over the risk of infection.

The researchers said “information, education, and communication programs at a number of levels would be needed: for instance, encouraging washing related to sexual activity - precoital or postcoital or as an everyday life skill."

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