Male Circumcision
December 26, 2017

Is Male Circumcision Recommended as an HIV Prevention Method in Canada?

The rise in cases of HIV infections in Canada have caused great alarm, and many are interested in learning about some of the methods they can use to stay safe from infection. There are many preventative measures available, but unfortunately, male circumcision is not one of them.

Voluntary male circumcision is only recommended by the World Health Organization as a preventative measure, in countries with heterosexual HIV epidemics, and where HIV prevalence is more than 15%. Such countries are mainly found in Eastern and Southern Africa, and Canada, fortunately, is not one of them.

The HIV epidemic is prevalent in areas with a highly dense population of men who have sex with men, and in people who use injection drugs, who risk getting infected through shared needles.

Even if it were certain that opting for adult circumcision played a role in lowering rates of infection, there would still be a chance to get infected.

As a circumcised male, your odds of remaining safe, are still only around 60% when having unprotected sex, when there is a risk of getting infected. This means that you still have around a 40% chance of getting infected, and you should take every necessary precaution to stop this from happening.

The bottom line is, whether you are a heterosexual man or a man who has sex with other men, and you are considering opting for the cut as a means of reducing your chances of getting infected, you should understand that regardless, you would still not be 100% safe from virus.

Instead, you should consider more effective ways of preventing HIV infections, such as using condoms, not having multiple sex partners, and avoiding sharing needles amongst drug users.