Thursday, June 22, 2006

"Condoms May Prevent Cervical Cancer", Then Again, They May Not

So says the headline. Condoms no more prevent Cervical Cancer than they do Pregnancy. Condoms greatly reduce the risk of both. Nothing, save celibacy, prevents either of the above.

Cervical Cancer and the most prevalent form of infertility are both caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), a sexually transmissable disease. HPV infection risk greatly rises the more sexual partners a woman has.

Condoms of course would reduce the risk of this nasty infection (and it is NASTY, you are warned, VERY NASTY--look at these pictures here and here). But here's the rub, if you'll pardon the pun, the people indulging in multiple partner sex, who engage in risky sexual behaviors, are not inclined to want to use or force their partners to use a condom. They have low self esteem. They have low regard for their own safety, health and life. They extend this hopeless worldview to their partners and don't particularly consider the ramifications of their actions--children, disease, eventual cancer, infertility or even death--to others either.

See? All the research in the world can't change a human heart or human behavior. A person must decide that they are worth something to make a self protective decision.

Here is how Daniel DeNoon presents the research though:

Forget what you've heard. Condoms do protect women against cancercancer- and wart-causing human papillomavirus (HPV) infections, according to a new study. [emphasis added, -ed.]

HPV is the leading cause of cervical cancercervical cancer.

Although it is a sexually transmitted infection, you can get HPV even in sex without penetration, such as with skin-to-skin contact. Hence, there's been a lot of doubt as to whether condoms -- even when used perfectly -- can protect against HPV.

Doubters still can point to the fact that condoms don't offer perfect protection. But they now have to admit they help. [emphasis added, -ed.]

Women whose male sex partners use condoms consistently -- and correctly -- cut their risk of HPV infection by 70%, according to the study by University of Washington researchers Rachel L. Winer, PhD, and colleagues. [emphasis added, -ed.]

Mr. DeNoon says, "Forget what you heard-- condoms do protect women against cancer" but he then goes on to quote the researchers who say "Women whose male sex partners use condoms consistently--and correctly--cut their risk of HPV infection by 70%".

Forget what I've heard? What have I heard? HPV is extremely contagious and even condoms don't completely prevent infections. Is that so different from what the researchers say? And who are these "doubters" and why the contemptuous tone? Wait a minute. Are you angry because some people believe and put forth the notion of abstinance or monogomy? Does the presence of nasty diseases secondary to nasty behavior anger you? Do you despise the fact that certain actions have dire consequences?

Back to the article. Now, the idea of cutting my risk of cancer by 70% is appealing, but reducing my risk by 100% is even more appealling. Stating the absolute obvious, to everyone I suppose except reporters with an ax to grind like Mr. DeNoon, the researchers go on to state:
"Persons who choose to be sexually active can be reassured that condom use can reduce the risk of most sexually transmitted diseases," Steiner and Cates write. "Persons who abstain from sexual intercourse or who are uninfected and mutually monogamous eliminate the risk of sexually transmitted infections."
Mr. DeNoon I guess you'll call me a "doubter." Obviously condoms reduce risk. Big whup. A woman whose infected partner is using a condom consistently and correctly still has a big enough chance to contract HPV to make it risky--just less risky. She has a 30% greater chance of getting HPV than someone who is monomogous with an uninfected partner. Doesn't look so good from that angle, does it? Doesn't look good from any angle. Read this:

Women whose sex partners used condoms less than 5% of the time had an HPV infection rate of 89 infections per 100 patient-years. That is, if 100 of these women were sexually active for one year, 89 of them would have HPV infections. Women who used condoms every time they had sex had an HPV infection rate of 38 infections per 100 patient-years.
And this, my friends, qualifies as "encouraging" news:
However, the researchers find it encouraging that these young women, new to sex, were able to reduce their HPV risk via consistent use of condoms by their male partners.
I don't find it encouraging at all. In fact, I find it depressing and sad. A sexually active young woman is almost guaranteed a sexually transmissable disease that can render her infertile and give her cancer. The infertility epidemic we see today mostly rests on the back of the sexual revolution that makes people slaves to disease and deprived of achieving future dreams. Research like this only enables the delusion of "safe sex". No such thing exists outside of monogomous, disease-free relationships and even then a baby can always be a result in hetero relationships.

This article isn't so much reporting as it is propaganda.

1 comment:

vj said...

I did some volunteer work once for the Pregnancy Assistance Center and part of their training was to be somewhat versed on the various different STD's that are out there.
My sheltered self was shocked what I learned. It is way more common then what one would think. Yuck, scary stuff!!!