I was looking for something else and came upon this podcast for medical types (like myself) spewing pro-circ propaganda (they discuss three studies -all of which where terminated early for "ethical reasons" - done in Africa which examined circ and HIV transmission). PUKE!!!! It basically celebrates the epithelialization of the glans (basically drying it up) as the mechanism for "preventing" HIV transmission. Truly cringe worthy. Their goal is to promote circumcision to (adult) men in Africa. Noteworthy, they also think circ should be given as "an option" to "certain subsect" of men in the US who are at higher risk for HIV transmission to reduce their risk (not prevent) HIV transmission.......and somehow, the AAP and other US medical authorities have taken these flawed studies and decided to issue a blanket recommendation that all newborn boys be circumcised. FRICKIN' RIDICULOUS!!!!
Frankly, I'm not surprsied. Many American doctors seem to love everything about circ.
1. Most american doctors are themselves circ'd, so creating an environment which supports circ is very emotionally reassuring to them.
2. To a doctor performing circs, they can make up to $400 for 15 minutes of work, for something they think is "easy".
3. The sale of infant foreskins is highly profitable.
Perpetually breastfeeding or pregnant ENFP mom to a lot of kids...wife to a midwestern nice guy...living in tropical paradise...pink cats and homebirths rock!
What happened was, all of the studies were terminated early when the results were showing what the researchers wanted them to show -- that circumcision decreases HIV transmission. This definitely biases the results, because they don't have long-term follow up studies.
The first randomized controlled study that was completed was rejected by the Lancet for ethical reasons. The ethical problem was that men who were HIV+ at the beginning of the study were not informed of their status. However, that study was then published in PLoS (Public Library of Science, an online journal).
The next two studies apparently did not have this ethical problem, and were completed (although terminated early) and published in the Lancet.
Nowhere were the ethical issues of true informed consent, etc. raised, so that is a valid ethical point to levy against these studies.
IMO, however, it is important to argue on the facts about what the studies did and didn't do, so that we are not vulnerable to charges of having our facts wrong.
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