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October 26, 2014 / 2 Heshvan, 5775
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Non-Surgical Israeli Circumcision Device Will Slow Spread of AIDS

The PrePex is the only circumcision method, aside from conventional surgery, approved by WHO.
PrePex

A non-surgical circumcision device that could delay the spread of AIDS in Africa has received approval from the World Health Organization on Friday, according to the NY Times.

The PrePex is the only circumcision method, aside from conventional surgery, approved by WHO. Naturally, this is not a halachically accepted method, and it is intended strictly for medical use.

Dr. Eric P. Goosby, the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator, told the NYT that the device would “truly help save lives.”

Some experts believe that circumcision lowers the chance of a heterosexual male contracting HIV by about 60 percent.

The U.S. has so far paid for more than 2 million circumcisions in Africa to assist the effort to curb the spread of AIDS.

A two-nurse team employs the PrePex to remove a male’s foreskin with a rubber band. The procedure requires only topical anesthesia, and is safer than surgery.

The device was developed by Circ MedTech, an Israeli company founded in 2009, according to Bloomberg Business Week. Circ MedTech describes itself as a social enterprise, offering innovative, affordable and scalable public healthcare solutions.

“Our primary goal is to positively contribute to the global fight against HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases,” declares their website.

According to Circ MedTech, the PrePex device was validated for the safety and efficacy of task shifting from physicians to nurses by the Government of Rwanda, the study was published in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (JAIDS). This study represents the third and final clinical evaluation of the PrePex device based on the WHO Framework for Clinical Evaluation of Devices for Adult Male Circumcision.

The study demonstrated that circumcision performed by nurses when using the PrePex device is safe and effective. This third step follows the PrePex clinical validation of safety, efficacy and supremacy over surgical circumcision performed by surgeons in Rwanda.

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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4 Responses to “Non-Surgical Israeli Circumcision Device Will Slow Spread of AIDS”

  1. Please make sure it's manufactured in Judea/Samaria.

  2. Hugh Intactive says:

    Here in New Zealand, we use a device like the PrePex, but on sheep, not people, and not on their foreskins. It's called the Elastrator.

    The claim that this will slow the spread of HIV/AIDS is a pipedream, based on 73 men who didn't get HIV less than two years after 5,400 men were circumcised, while 64 did. Circumcising men may increase the risk to women, but they cut that study short “for futility” before that could be confirmed. Women are already at much greater risk from heterosexual transmission than men, so a slight increase caused by circumcision could greatly increase the risk overall.

    HIV causes AIDS, but there's a lot we don't know about how the virus is spread in Africa, and this simplistic "solution" could be disastrous.

  3. Menorah Seven says:

    Another point for Israel! Kinda make you think that maybe G-d knows what He is doing! Oh that's the "old law" Well heres more proof that it isn't! Now why the US is at it finance for vasectomies in Africa and this country!

  4. Mark Lyndon says:

    From a USAID report:
    “There appears no clear pattern of association between male circumcision and HIV prevalence—in 8 of 18 countries with data, HIV prevalence is lower among circumcised men, while in the remaining 10 countries it is higher.”.
    http://www.measuredhs.com/pubs/pdf/CR22/CR22.pdf

    It seems highly unrealistic to expect that there will be no risk compensation. The South African National Communication Survey on HIV/AIDS, 2009 found that 15% of adults across age groups “believe that circumcised men do not need to use condoms”.
    http://www.info.gov.za/issues/hiv/survey_2009.htm

    It is unclear if circumcised men are more likely to infect women. The only ever randomized controlled trial into male-to-female transmission showed a 54% higher rate in the group where the men had been circumcised:
    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(09)60998-3/abstract

    ABC (Abstinence, Being faithful, and especially Condoms) is the way forward. Promoting genital surgery seems likely to cost African lives rather than save them.

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