Male Circumcision Prevents Heterosexual Acquisition of HIV

A number of studies have been conducted to proof or disapprove the arguments going in favor and against the health benefits of male circumcision. A recent finding has claimed for prevention of AIDS transfer in heterosexuals.

Here’s a detail explanation of the study and the conclusion driven from its findings:

Background of the Study

The past had a number of observational studies, meta-analyses and reviews, along with biological theories on circumcised men being free from HIV – and these findings and studies were the base for these recent conclusions. Some other past studies had also supported statements for adult circumcision to be a way of preventing sexually acquired infections and diseases.

This article is using the evidence and explanation provided by Circumcision Center where Dr. Cornell is performing extensive adult circumcisions. And is also doing great work in bringing awareness to people about the health benefits of circumcision. Here’s what the objective and finding is of this recent study:

Objective of the Study

The major objectives of this study included: To assess the evidence of an interventional effect of male circumcision for preventing acquisition of HIV-1 and HIV-2 by men through heterosexual intercourse, and to examine the value and feasibility of performing individual meta-analysis and person data.

Data Collection

The data was collected from various places, including the published and unpublished studies, and database listing conference abstracts as well as all lists of articles on the same topic were scanned and so were the author’s contacted detailed discussion.

#1 – The Criteria for Selection

The random and quasi-random trials of male circumcision were searched, and even in the absence, the observation studies which compared acquisition rates of HIV-1 and HIV-2 infection in un-circumcised and circumcised heterosexual men were chosen.

#2 – Data Collection and Analysis

Various studies were selected, assessed for their quality, and even became the basis of extracting data. The studies were stratified based on their designs and whether they included participants from high risk groups of people of general population. These studies were mostly found crude; their odd ratio was adjusted with their 95% confidence intervals and then a sensitivity analysis was conducted to explore the effects of adjustment on adjustment of the study results.

Major Findings

There were three randomized controlled trials that were beginning shortly. A total of 34 observational studies were found: 16 were conducted on general population and 18 on high risk population. These studies however did not account sexual practices and religion for being the base of these studies.

The tests conducted on general population resulted in: One study showed greater difference in HIV transmission rates between circumcised and uncircumcised men. In similar ways, results from other studies also showed greater significance for support in prevention of adult males from all kinds of HIV effects. Some however showed ambiguous results.

The tests conducted on high-risk groups resulted in: the study was divided into four parts; all found a protective effect from circumcision. Two of these studies statistically showed greater significant results and two studies reported adjusted odds ratios with one being significant and both being protective. All rest cross-sectional studies reported in acquiring benefits from circumcision.

Overall, all these case-control studies reportedly found effective role of circumcision in preventing the effect of HIV. No studies reported on the adverse effects of circumcision. In most cases, males were circumcised in childhood or adolescence.


Insufficient evidences were found to support the interventional effect of male circumcision on HIV acquisition in heterosexual men. However, past studies showed a greater epidemiological association between prevention of HIV and male circumcision, especially in the individuals who were prone to higher acquisition of HIV.

While, observational studies are very limited by cofounding that cannot be fully adjusted for. The results of all these trials will need a careful consideration before applying circumcision as a public health intervention for preventing sexually transmitted HIV. Although, earlier studies were conducted in areas where there people had higher risk acquiring AIDS and since the findings did not have further investigations, therefore male circumcision remained in the shadow of right or wrong arguments.

This study of using circumcision as a prevention measure for heterosexuals gave an insight into understanding how circumcision can be helpful in controlling the transmission and adverse affects.


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