London - Being circumcised does not affect a man’s sex life, a landmark study has revealed.
Australian scientists analysed nearly 40 studies and concluded that the procedure had no effect on sensitivity or satisfaction.
While some studies have previously reported a negative outcome, these were found to have flaws – and their reliability has been called into question by this latest research.
The most scientifically rigorous studies, however, concluded that circumcision had little, if any, effect.
Lead author of the study, Professor Brian Morris of the University of Sydney, said: “This is a groundbreaking article.
“The health benefits of male circumcision have been well-documented, including substantially lower risks of HIV and other viral and some bacterial sexually transmitted infections.
“It also lowers rates of penile cancer and possibly prostate cancer – and women whose partners are circumcised have lower rates of cervical cancer and infections such as HPV and chlamydia.
“However, there is continued concern that circumcision may reduce male sexual function and pleasure.
“Yet the highest-quality studies suggest that medical male circumcision has no adverse effect on sexual function, sensitivity, sexual sensation, or satisfaction.”
He and his co-researcher John Krieger looked at 36 studies totalling 40 473 men – half circumcised and half were not. Each of the studies was graded in terms of quality, according to official guidelines.
The professors found that the very high-quality studies reported circumcision “had no overall adverse effect on penile sensitivity, sexual arousal, sexual sensation, erectile function, premature ejaculation, duration of intercourse, orgasm difficulties, sexual satisfaction, pleasure, or pain during penetration”.
In contrast, the studies which find negative effects were poor quality, Morris said.
He added: “The methodology was impeccable – it searched all of the conventional publication databases to retrieve all research articles containing relevant data. It then ranked these by quality according to the conventional guidelines.”
The study, published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, discusses large studies to back up the findings.
One high-quality trial of nearly 3 000 sexually experienced men in Kenya involved them completing a questionnaire at six-monthly intervals up to 24 months after they were circumcised.
At each time point, there were no significant differences in sexual performance or satisfaction in men who were circumcised and those who weren’t.
At 24 months, 99.9 percent of men were satisfied with their circumcisions. In fact, 72 percent of men said sensitivity had increased and 19 percent said it was the same.
Ease of reaching orgasm was greater in 63 percent and the same in 22 percent.
Another large trial, involving 2 250 Ugandan men, found no difference in sexual desire or difficulty in achieving or maintaining an erection. A year after circumcision, 99 percent reported being sexually satisfied. – Daily Mail