Monday, November 19, 2012

Unsafe Oral Sex

We live in an age of oral sex. Young people are apparently having more sex with more partners than ever before. Very often that means that they are having oral sex.

What could be safer?

Besides, NPR reports, most young people do not consider oral sex to be sex. You can have all the oral (and even anal) sex you like and still be a virgin.

And oral sex is foolproof contraception. It feels risk free. In our new egalitarian age it is almost as likely to be performed by men on women as vice versa.

Now comes the bad news. Oral sex has just surpassed tobacco as the leading cause of mouth cancer.

You thought tobacco juice was bad. It turns out, oral sex is worse.

It seems self-evident, but the more partners a person has had the higher the risk of getting cancer.

Our source is unimpeachable. NPR reports:

If you're keeping score, here's even more evidence that HPV causes oral, head and neck cancers and that vaccines may be able to prevent it.

Researchers studying the human papillomavirus say that in the United States HPV causes 64 percent of oropharynxl cancers. In the rest of the world, tobacco remains the leading cause of oral cancer, Dr. Maura Gillison of Ohio State University told a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science this past weekend.

And the more oral sex someone has had — and the more partners they've had — the greater their risk of getting these cancers, which grow in the middle part of the throat. "An individual who has six or more lifetime partners — on whom they've performed oral sex – has an eightfold increase in risk compared to someone who has never performed oral sex," she said.

The recent rise in oropharnx cancer is predominantly among young, white men, she noted, though she says no one has figured out why yet. About 37,000 people in the United States were diagnosed with oral cancer in 2010, according to the Oral Cancer Foundation.

Why has no one has figured out why young white men, a group of enlightened, liberated males, a group that has now mastered the art of performing oral sex is most afflicted by the new cases of mouth cancer?

Perhaps, some people are not thinking very clearly.

NPR does not want young people to panic. This cancer, it explains, is preventable. A vaccine is now available:

Over the past five years, health officials have been urging parents to make sure their daughters are vaccinated against HPV to help prevent cervical cancer. But these new results suggest that young men could also benefit from vaccination, though the costs would be substantial.

While none of the researchers could say definitively that the vaccines against HPV, Gardasil and Cervarix, would prevent throat cancer, they thought it could was reasonable to think the vaccine could reduce risks as well.

It’s not definitive, but still it’s news you can use… I guess.


Anonymous said...

I'm 66 y/o agnostic, no problem w/sexual expressions. Did some, glad not more now.

20+ STDs around. Herpes numbers alone (incurable) chilling. Incredible how Mother Nature punishes promiscuity. Incredible. She's so "moralistic" (not being funny, it's a fact). I wonder why. -- Rich

Anonymous said...

Forgot to mention. As medic in VN, I gave Countless clap shots to All ranks. Caught it myself. Two long needles into buttocks. Twice.

US Military used to Punish STDs. It found troops just got sicker, and stopped. That's reversing now. Plus, using Prostitutes can (theoretically) get Life in Leavenworth. Rationale: Human Trafficking. -- Rich

n.n said...

Some behaviors engender dysfunctional outcomes. The common thread is that there is progressive normalization with progressive dissociation of risk. The paradox of progress is the advancement of retrogressive behavior. The irony of progress is that it is typically a terminal condition.

Anonymous said...

Funny how after marketing thier brand spanking new anti cancer drug for HPV cancer prevention in women, there comes along a study showing that oral sex causes throat and mouth cancer in men! What a coincidence that its the SAME HPV strain!

Imagine that. We already have a drug for that! No need for any of that pesky testing or anything though, been there, done that! Got the government seal of approval so you cant sue them if you die or end up sterile or anything nasty like that... just lending a helping hand you know...

Creating and marketing their fancy new drug to girls was good, but with just the cost of a "study" they can double sales overnight.

What? Cynical? Nah. I trust all them media type people to always tell me the truth about everything!

Dennis said...


When I was stationed in Southeast Asia during the VN War I kept hearing a story about an STD that was so virulent that the guys who got it were condemned to stay there, so they could not introduce it here, and eventually died in country. Do you know whether that was true or not?

Anonymous said...

Every Soldier in VN talked about SuperClap. It was a Fairy Tale. I don't know where it came from. When I was at UofIL, guys worried about Saltpeter in dining hall food.

Guys gossip. If I was the conspiratorial type, I'd say the SuperClap story was concocted by the Brass to scare us away from VN girls. Didn't work! -- Rich

Dennis said...


Thanks. Of the two years I spent in Southeast Asia, and traveling extensively in a number of countries, I never met anyone who had this kind of STD.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious about one thing:

Did NPR happen to mention that the cancer was preventable by not diving into every Thomasina, Ricci and Harriet's muff possible?

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