A new study released Monday has found that men who are circumcised before their first sexual encounter have a 15 percent lower incidence of prostate cancer than men who are uncircumcised or were circumcised after they first had sex.
Researchers say that because circumcised men are slightly less likely to contract herpes and human papillomavirus (HPV) than uncircumcised men, which previous studies have linked to a higher incidence of prostate cancer, circumcision might offer a level of protection against the disease.
Janet Stanford, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and one of the authors of the report, which was published in the journal Cancer, says the study was a “natural extension” of ones that linked STDs to prostate cancer rates.
“It’s not a new hypothesis, this is just another piece of the puzzle” to determining what causes prostate cancer, she says. “It’s a procedure we have good reason to think would reduce exposure to potential sexually transmitted agents and thereby may prevent inflammation in the prostate, which is associated with a reduced risk of developing prostate cancer.”
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SOURCE: U.S.News & World Report