October/November #183 : Infant Circumcision Grows to Global Debate - by Trenton Straube

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The Show Must Go On

A Capital Affair

From the Editor

Trench Warfare


Letters- October/November 2012


Full-Court Press

What You Need to Know

Jamar Rogers's Voice Will Go On

Olympic Winner Tells the World He's Positive

Pesky Email Spam Offers Clues for Eradicating HIV

Infant Circumcision Grows to Global Debate

Why Folks With HIV Can Be Excellent Transplant Recipients

We Hear You

Dr. No

POZ Survey Says

Taking Risks to Help Others

What Matters to You

Finding an HIV Vaccine

Treatment News

Detecting the Missing Link Between HIV and Brain Drain

Point of Reentry: Getting Prisoners HIV Care

New Booster in Town: Cobicistat

Bronx Cheer: An HIV Testing Program Shows Progress

The "War on Drugs" Spreads HIV

Comfort Zone

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Hip-Hop Soul

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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October / November 2012

Infant Circumcision Grows to Global Debate

by Trenton Straube

The health benefits of circumcising baby boys outweigh the risks, the American Academy of Pediatrics says in an updated policy statement. But it stopped short of recommending the procedure, which can lower the risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. The topic continues to make headlines:

  • In Germany, a court ruled that circumcising a child amounts to bodily harm. The ruling applied to one specific case, but it put Jewish and Muslim leaders on the defensive.

  • In San Francisco, anti-circumcision advocates (or “intactivists” as in “having intact genitalia”) gathered enough signatures to put a child circumcision ban on the ballot. A judge nixed it, saying that regulating medical procedures is a matter for the state, not cities.

  • In the United States, circumcision rates for male newborns have plummeted from 79 percent in the 1980s to 55 percent in 2010 (partially because more health insurers, including some Medicaid programs, no longer cover the cost). This alarms Johns Hopkins researchers who estimate that if rates drop to 10 percent—similar to Europe—health care costs will climb $4 billion and we’ll see a 12 percent increase in HIV among men.

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