Latest findings on HIV / circ? - Mothering Forums
The Case Against Circumcision > Latest findings on HIV / circ?
nomadic's Avatar nomadic 05:57 PM 07-26-2003
I was hoping someone here could help me. Someone has just posted on another board that I visit that all African baby boys should all be circed at birth : to prevent the spread of AIDS.

I've been trying to find the latest research so that I can discuss this intelligently, but there seems to have been a lot of flawed studies and speculation.

Can anyone provide me with links to any reputable research done into this area? I think I read somewhere that a new study was due to be published this month but haven't come across anything so far.

Frankly Speaking's Avatar Frankly Speaking 12:25 AM 07-27-2003
You're right about a lot of flawed research. The last I saw showed about a 2/10ths of a percent difference. Another had absolutely the opposite results of what were intended. Due to a miscommunication between the researchers and the study subjects, the subjects thought that their new circumcisions would protect them from AIDS and were participating in some very risky practices. The fact of the matter is that circumcision does not offer any statistically significant protection and never will. Regardless of the miniscule difference, the study authors used it to recommend universal mandatory male circumcision in those areas. Does that give you any indication of the intent of the researchers?

Something they seriously need to take a look at is all of those uncircumcised women that the men are getting AIDS from. I am absolutely certain that is the real problem!

somemama's Avatar somemama 11:49 AM 07-28-2003
Sara29's Avatar Sara29 02:05 PM 07-28-2003
There was an article listed here on aids/circ:
nomadic's Avatar nomadic 06:40 PM 07-28-2003
Thanks for the info everyone.

I'm pretty sure that the guy I was talking about in the OP was referring to the media coverage of a presentation which was made at the International Aids Conference last year in Barcelona about male circumcision as a strategy to prevent HIV in Botswana. I managed to find the text, which was published in the Sexually Transmitted Infections journal:
Unlike the article itself, the criticisms are well referenced and very convincing.

Even though the anti-circ sites discuss this subject much more persuasively and exhaustively than I can, I wanted to avoid linking to them because I KNOW the person who brought it up will automatically discount anything from an anti-circ website.

I had read that the Medical Research Council was coming out with a review of all the previous circumcision/HIV studies, basically criticising the standard of the research that has been done ( and concluding that circumcision does NOT prevent the spread of AIDS. This morning I found the text of the review, (, which has just been published.

So now I'm off to write my response - wish me luck!