A new study provides fresh evidence that circumcision offers men some protection from sexually transmitted viruses, said Rob Stein in The Washington Post. Following earlier findings that circumcised men are 50 percent to 60 percent less likely to contract HIV, the new research found that circumcision “significantly” reduced a man’s risk of infection by the viruses that cause genital herpes, genital warts, and cervical cancer in women.
The U.S. pediatric guidelines on the pros and cons of circumcision are “quite neutral,” said Lauren Cox in ABC News. But the “mounting evidence” of the “controversial” procedure’s health benefits might sway doctors, parents, and insurers—Medicaid in 16 states and some private insurers don’t cover circumcision. Dr. Anthony Fauci, co-author of the study, says circumcision is a “doubly whammy” because it protects men and women.
Those findings—based on a study of 3,400 Ugandan men—“failed to convince” some British experts, said BBC News, especially about the benefits to women. Sexual health advocates in the U.K., where circumcision rates are lower, say that focusing on circumcision could encourage men to forgo condoms, thus endangering women more.