Stunning New Medical Research: Being American is Bad for You!

Male Circumcision Leads to a Bad Sex Life

Niels Ebdrup
Science Nordic
Mon, 14 Nov 2011 20:47 CST

The Danish study is the first one ever to look into what effect male circumcision has on their female partners.

Circumcised men have more difficulties reaching orgasm, and their female partners experience more vaginal pains and an inferior sex life, a new study shows.

If a man is circumcised, he faces an increased risk of experiencing delayed orgasm, and his female partner has an increased risk of not feeling sexually fulfilled.

This is the clear-cut conclusion of a new Danish research article, which has received international attention.

Some 5,000 sexually active men and women were surveyed about their experiences and possible problems with their sex lives. With a specific focus on circumcised men and their women, the results are startling.

“Circumcised men are three times as likely to experience a frequent inability to reach an orgasm,” says one of the researchers, associate professor Morten Frisch of SSI, a Danish research, production and service enterprise.

Research into the effects on women is unique

This is one of only a few studies of the sexual consequences of male circumcision, and in one area in particular it is groundbreaking:

“Previous studies into male circumcision have looked at the effects it has on the men. But scientists have never really studied the effects this has on the women’s sex lives,” says Frisch.

“It appears that women with circumcised men are twice as likely to be sexually frustrated. They experience a three-fold risk of frequent difficulties in achieving orgasm, and an eight-fold risk of feeling pain during intercourse – also known as dyspareunia.”

The study has received international attention. Politicians from California, for example, have been in contact with the researchers because they want to ban circumcision in their federal state.

Circumcised Men Prefer It Rough

There appears to be a very simple reason why circumcised men and their partners are having problems with their sex lives.

The circumcised man develops a thin layer of hard skin on his penis head, which decreases the sensitivity. This means that in order to reach an orgasm, he needs to work harder at it, and that can lead to a painful experience for the woman.

“We conducted a survey, but the data does not explain why these problems occur. There are, however, some good suggestions in the scientific literature,” he explains.

When the penis enters the vagina, the foreskin is pulled back. And on its way out again, the foreskin goes back to cover the penis head. This way the foreskin stimulates both the man and the woman.

The gliding in-and-out movement of the foreskin, combined with the in-and-out movement inside the vagina, constitutes what is known as ‘the gliding movement’.

“When a circumcised man moves in and out of a woman without ‘the gliding movement’ caused by the foreskin, it can have a painful effect on the woman’s mucous membrane. This could explain the pain and the tendency towards dryness that some women with circumcised men experience.”

Sources of Error were Filtered Out

A vast majority of the circumcised men in the study were circumcised based on a doctor’s estimate.

At the time, masturbation was thought to lead to a long list of problems, including mental illness and typhus.

“Only five percent of all Danish men are circumcised, yet we have statistically valid evidence that male circumcision can be associated with sexual problems.

The study did not involve many religiously circumcised men – Jews and Muslims, for example. But even with these factors taken into account, the data pointed in the same direction. The statistical analyses also took a long list of additional relevant factors into account, including:

  • Age
  • Cultural background
  • Religious background
  • Marital status
  • Levels of education
  • Household income
  • Age at first intercourse
  • Number of sex partners
  • Frequency of sexual activity with one partner in the past year

“We adjusted for all these factors in an attempt to ensure that circumcision is the actual cause, and that the link isn’t attributable to other factors.”

Bottom-line results were clear

Frisch mentions an example of how things get muddled up if researchers do not adjust for possible sources of error when they work with statistics:

“If, for instance, you look at people who drink lots of beer, you’ll see that they face an increased risk of developing lung cancer, compared to those who don’t drink much,” he says. “But it’s not the drinking itself that causes the lung cancer. There just happens to be a correlation between drinking and smoking, and it is actually the smoking that causes the lung cancer.”

These kinds of error sources were taken into account, and the bottom-line results were clear:

“We’re seeing a consistent picture. Even though most circumcised men – and their women – do not have problems with their sex lives, there is a significantly larger group of circumcised men and their female partners who experience frequent problems in achieving orgasm, compared to couples where the man is not circumcised.”

In addition, there are significantly more women with circumcised men, who experience vaginal pains during intercourse or feel that their sexual needs are not met.

Further studies needed

Frisch hopes this new study will be replicated by researchers in other countries and cultures.

“That way we can ascertain whether this phenomenon applies to Danes only or whether it extends into other cultures too,” he says. “All in all, I have a humble approach to our findings, so I would also like to see whether other Danish studies would reach the same conclusions.”

Study resonates internationally

According to Frisch, the study has received a great deal of international attention. For example, he has been contacted by politicians in California, who are very pleased with the results of the study because they want to ban circumcision in their federal state.

Others are less excited, saying the research is controversial.

“This is a highly sensitive issue, and some people oppose the publication of this kind of research. Some people have actually tried to stop the publication of our article,” he explains.

A question of ethics

Certain groups and individuals are lobbying in favour circumcising all men, explains Frisch. Not necessarily out of religious concern, but because they believe that circumcision has a health-promotional effect. In Africa, for instance, there are indications that circumcision could reduce the risk of HIV infection.

Translated by Dann Vinther

12 responses to “Stunning New Medical Research: Being American is Bad for You!

  1. And some other angles that I explored for an article a while back.

  2. Such things may be. Whatever the case, I rejoice in the intactness of my manhood.

  3. Fortunately, being American =/= being circumcised (though there are some such as Dr Edgar Schoen who imagine it is). In fact the rate is now down around the tipping point, when “to look like the others” and “so he won’t be teased in the locker room” are more good reasons to just leave his genitals alone.

  4. That may good news for the world. Circumcised races tend to be physically aggressive. Possibly the decline of England correlates with the decline of circumcision in the higher classes. If so, this is sad. But it also may indicate a more peaceful future for the Americans.

  5. What a lot of old poppycock and pseudoscience! American women prefer men to be circumcised. Maybe it’s a runaway peacock’s tail scenario, but there it is.

  6. You can see a serious treatment of circumcision as a memeplex here: but the claim that “American women prefer men to be circumcised” is based on really bad science: a survey of 145 new Iowa mothers, (only 24 of whom had ever known any other kind) and we now know it was rigged – at least one mother wasn’t asked to take part until AFTER she’d said she would have a son cut.

  7. I’m one of those who has long argued that this is a fundamental rights issue, which has sadly been given insufficient interest because it is a purely male rights issue. Adults should be of course free to modify their own bodies as they desire, even in ways others find bizarre or repulsive. But an infant has a right to be intact.

    Outside of religious traditions, this is one of those stupid ideas that you just can’t get rid of, like drug prohibition. There were various reasons for its adoption in the west, particularly the USA. It was thought to be prophylactic against syphilis- the AIDS of its day (this crankery has in fact been resurrected by the Circumcisers in the modern age so they can inflict this barbarism on Africans). But the primary reason appears to have been an influential Public Health doctor in New York, whose name I’m too lazy to look up, who believed it was a cure for numerous “nervous diseases” which are these days known not to exist at all.

    Also, part of the reason American women claim to prefer circumcised penises is tellingly puritanical- that they look “neater” and “cleaner”. And, Carthage must be destroyed.

    I’m quite intrigued by the study reporting lower female satisfaction. I’ve come to the conclusion over the past few years that human sexual biology is only understandable if female sexual organs are seen as a “test rig” whose purpose is to measure the virility of the male, which is why orgasm is “easy” for men and “difficult” for women. Crudely put, a large, hard penis that lasts a long time before orgasm is a proxy for good genes and general health. The female (vaginal) orgasm is a reward to the female for choosing a good male, encouraging her to have sex with him again rather than lesser lights. So in that model, circumcision ought to improve her satisfaction by increasing at least one of the measured variable; time to (male) orgasm. I’ve speculated that that is one reason for the adoption of the practise, in fact; it allowed the lesser males to aspire to adequacy.

    It may be that lower sensitivity reduces male arousal, leading to a somewhat less erect penis (smaller and softer according to the test rig’s sensors) thus reducing two variables to increase one (staying power). More research is needed, as the saying goes.

    Anyhoo; from a libertarian perspective, I cannot see any justification for inflicting this practise on infants or children below the age of majority at all. It is a grievous bodily harm, and should be treated no differently to a parent choosing to amputate their childrens’ toes. That is, it should be prosecuted under the criminal law.

  8. Sean-

    ” Possibly the decline of England correlates with the decline of circumcision in the higher classes.”

    I think it correlates more closely with conquering a quarter of the globe and then losing money on it instead of turning a profit, and thus having to give it all back again.

  9. I object to the routine circumcision of baby boys. Circumcision is a medical procedure that should be done only on genuine medical grounds. Circumcision of an infant is, in my book, a violent sexual attack on a child.

  10. Speaking with my evolutionary-biologist’s hat on, I have sometimes thought about this problem. More especially in the last 40-odd-years since the sexologists invented those books about sex (which Kenneth Tynan invented of course in 1963) where you had funny cartoonish pics of thinnish bearded/mustachioed men (with moderately long hair) shagging unattractive brown-haired-women with small breasts, vast assemblages of pubic hair, and thick waists.

    It seems to me that, in a cooling world where food is getting scarcer like in the last 5-6 million years, it is an advantage for any male animal to come to orgasm as fast as possible. Ideally, the time should be under five seconds. This is the time it takes for a predator to creep up your and your partner’s collective arse, and tear the heads off you both while you are shagging, all oblivious to it. In watching animals shagging, I don’t ever seem to see the male one trying to “pleasure” the female,for any reason at all. She is the vector for a gamate, which has to meet a male gamete as quickly as possible, surely.

    In my experience, it seems better to “come” as quickly as possible, like in under a minute or two. For then (a) you can do it again later, in a couple of hours or less if you are very very young like about 19 or 20, and (b) you don’t end up gasping for breath, exhausted, and smelling of rancid sweat and therefore irritate and annoy your female in the bed immediately afterwards who then commands you to “take a shower, now! You smell!”

    And surely, if you “come” inside her very very fast like in about 30 seconds, she must then be gratified that you find her more attractive and pretty and sexy than if you took 10 or 20 mins over the thing?

    If circumcision works against this sort of behaviour, then it’s obviously a socialist plant, and no good for people at all. It would be especially no good for women, who will (a) get very sore due to excessive rubbing and scraping, (b) think the man “has hangups about her” as he “can’t come, right now, when I TELL him to”, (c) get bored, (d) complain that he’s a sweaty bastard who needs a shower NOW.

  11. The hominid brain is the most important sex organ. This is what differentiates us from the rest of the foul animals, like dogs, which lick their own private parts and those of other dogs….because they can. If your brain likes hers, and if yours knows her brain likes your brain, then there should be no problem – it will be done in 30 seconds.

    Then, there is also no need for all that disgusting, pretentious, physical, gooey and slimy and leftist “foreplay” crap, often supposed to involve mouths and stuff. Sorry. Just getting 50 years of agreed-terms-of-public-discourse-opinion-about-how it’s done, off my chest.

    It’s time stuff like this was said.

  12. Welll, while we’re on the subject, two interesting and entirely unrelated facts:

    1) Hyenas, unusually for mammals, operate a female dominance hierarchy. Dominant females grow an enlarged clitoris which entirely resembles a penis. Submissive females lick the clitorises of dominant females to indicate submission.

    2) About 40 years ago, lesbian feminists declared the clitoris to be the centre of female sexual experience, and the licking thereof to be the only meritous sexual act.

    Just saying, you know.