Male Circumcision Pales Amid Variables and the Bigger Picture

A recent PLoS article [html] has made a persuasive argument that controlling for a single variable in the HIV epidemic can neutralize any potential benefit from male circumcision. The study suggests targeting said variable would be far more effective than a messy, ethically questionable, and expensive mass male circumcision campaign.

The study’s author, John R. Talbott, concludes that the size of the female sex worker population and their operation outside any regulatory environment are the drivers of the epidemic rather than low levels of male circumcision.

I find it extraordinarily interesting that highly sexually regimented societies or those with a history of such regimentation, primarily Muslim and Catholic countries, have a relatively controlled level of HIV infection. Post-modern or  less religious countries such as those of Northern Europe and eastern countries, many with a Buddhist tradition, have moved quickly to stem the tied of HIV infection, and therefore also enjoy relatively low levels of infection from successful anti-HIV programs.

Sub-Saharan Africa has neither the tradition of sexual regimentation nor the reality of a  post-modern/Buddhist society. Wouldn’t it be worth studying these problems of sociology to determine the drivers of the epidemic? Clearly, the Talbott article is a valuable contribution in this direction.

Download Tablot article

Or download it from the source: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0000543

About David Wilton

fronterizo, defense lawyer
This entry was posted in Africa and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s