Most men in the United States have no say on whether they want to keep their foreskin. Birth circumcisions are performed on about 60 percent of male newborns, yet it remains one of the most controversial procedures for doctors and parents alike. Now, researchers at the University of Chicago suggest snipping the tip — even as an adult — provides more sexual benefits for men than leaving it alone. 

“It improved sexual pleasure and function for most men and significantly decreased coital injuries,” wrote the researchers, in the study's abstract, published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

Read More: Why Male Babies Should Be Circumcised: CDC States Benefits Outweigh Risks, Prevent HIV Transmission

Voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) was performed on over 360 men; this procedure is effective in decreasing HIV risk via female-to-male sexual transmission by approximately 60 percent, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

VMMC involves surgically removing the foreskin, or the retractable fold of tissue that covers the head of the penis, due to its high vulnerability to HIV infections. Researchers sought to examine satisfaction post-VMMC after six months and 24 months by measuring sexual pleasure and function, incidence of sex injuries, and HIV risk-related behaviors that can impact its success. 

The overwhelming majority of men (98 percent) reported high levels of satisfaction with their surgery; their female partners (95 percent) were also pleased with the results. Over two-thirds of men admitted to enjoying sex more post-VMMC. Moreover, 94 percent of men were very satisfied or satisfied with sex after surgery. In other words, sexual pleasure increased, as the likelihood of a sex-related injury decreased. Some men reported having at least two sexual partners after VMMC compared to pre-surgery.

"The study confirmed men's long-term satisfaction with the outcome of their VMMC," wrote the researchers.

Previous research has confirmed circumcised men do reap additional sexual benefits compared to their uncircumcised counterparts.

Last Longer In Bed

In a 2014 study, adults who got VMMC recorded how long it took them to ejaculate pre-surgery and three months after circumcision. Men lasted an average of 20 seconds longer after their tip was snipped. Researchers suspect ejaculation time lasts longer because circumcision during adulthood decreases penile sensitivity.

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Boost Partner's Satisfaction

Men who get circumcised may boost their partner's satisfaction and sexual health. A 2011 study found adult males who get circumcised tend to have lower rates of HPV infection, and so did their female partners. Therefore, since fewer men were infected, fewer transmitted HPV to their partners. About 40 percent of the women reported being more sexually satisfied after their partner's circumcision; the reason — better hygiene.

Lowers STD Risk

Circumcision can reduce the risk of HIV, and the susceptibility to other STIs. The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention also notes it lowers the risk of STIs such as genital herpes and HPV. A 2009 study in Uganda found circumcised men have a 25 percent lower risk of genital herpes, and a 35 percent lower risk of HPV, a virus that can lead to genital warts and cancer. The study was unable to show whether circumcision has any effect on homosexual transmission of HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). The researchers emphasize circumcision and safe sex are key factors in preventing HIV and STDs.

Circumcision still remains a heavily debated topic around the world; a procedure loaded with pros and cons from both supporters and critics. Clearly, there are several advantages and benefits of removing the foreskin, like increasing sexual satisfaction for both men and women. Snipping the tip for a better sex life could be the evidence many men need to get circumcised.

Source: Brito MO, Khosla S, Pananookooln S et al. Sexual Pleasure and Function, Coital Trauma, and Sex Behaviors After Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision Among Men in the Dominican Republic. Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2017.

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