This article, published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, investigates the association between male circumcision and the prevalence of high-risk human papillomavirus virus (HR-HPV) among young men.
Data was collected from uncircumcised men ages 18-24 years old in Africa. Study participants were randomized into two groups, circumcised (MC) and not circumcised (control group), and they were required to attend follow-up visits. The men were offered circumcision services if they were randomized into the MC group. Circumcision status and sexual behaviors information were recorded at each visit. At the 21-month follow-up visit, a urethral swab was obtained and tested for HR-HPV.
The researchers found that the prevalence of HR-HPV was 14.8% for men in the MC group and 22.3% for men in the uncircumcised group. This was the first research study showing the reduction of urethral HR-HPV after male circumcision. These results also explained why women with circumcised partners are at a lower risk of cervical cancer than other women.
Auvert, B., Sobngwi-Tambekou, J., Cutler, E., Nieuwoudt, M., Lissouba, N., Puren, A. and D. Taljaard. Effect of Male Circumcision on the Prevalence of High-Risk Human Papillomavirus (HR-HPV) in Young Men. 2008. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 199(1):14-19.