The outcomes of two scientific tests had been released this year (in the Overseas Microbicides Conference) which, some may think, call into question the security of employing lubricants for rectal intercourse. But just what do these outcomes reveal? May be the proof adequate to change our safer sex texting? We do not think therefore — check out the explanation for why we do not think our texting about lube usage for anal intercourse should alter.
Lubes and Tissue Harm
For just one associated with the studies, scientists analyzed different lubricants (lubes) in a lab. They discovered that a number of the lubes had higher levels of dissolved salts and sugars than generally present in a cell. As a result of this, a number of the lubes possessed an effect that is toxic the anal tissue examined in a test pipe within the lab. This caused anal tissues to be stripped away. 1 If the products have actually the effect that is same utilized in individuals, the damaged anal tissue might be more vulnerable to HIV along with other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) than it currently is.
The scientists tested six lubes that are being sold over-the-counter. Five had been water-based lubes (Astroglide, Elbow Grease, ID Glide, KY Jelly and Prй genital lubricant) and another had been silicone-based (damp Platinum).
The real properties of this lubes had been calculated and four (Astroglide, Elbow Grease, ID Glide and KY Jelly) were discovered to draw water from the cells lining the anus and to the anus it self, damaging the cells. Whenever these four lubes had been tested on anal muscle in a test pipe, these people were discovered to remove cells within the layer that is outer of tissue. Two associated with the lubes, Prй and damp Platinum, caused reasonably small harm.
Lubes and Intimately Sent Infections
The 2nd research discovered that men and women whom reported using lubes for receptive rectal intercourse in the last had been around three times prone to have rectal STI if they had been tested throughout the research compared to those whom would not report utilizing a lube. This increased risk for an STI ended up being current even though a condom had been used. 2
Between October 2006 and December 2008, 879 both women and men from the rectal microbicide research effort were surveyed about their intimate behavior and had been tested for just two anal STIs (gonorrhea and chlamydia). Somewhat not even half associated with research participants (421) reported having receptive anal sex when you look at the year that is past. For the 229 men and 192 ladies who had had receptive anal intercourse, intimate behavior interviews and anal tests for chlamydia and gonorrhea had been readily available for 302 among these research individuals. Inside this team, about three-quarters (230) stated that they had utilized a lube the past time they’d anal intercourse. Of these, 67% utilized a water-based lube, 28% utilized a silicon-based lube, 17% utilized an oil-based lube ( e.g., Crisco), and 6% used numbing lubes. These figures soon add up to significantly more than 100% because some people utilized one or more form of lube.
Anal chlamydia or gonorrhea had been present in 5.6% of females and 10.2% of males. About one out of nine (11.7%) for the individuals who used lube the final time they had anal intercourse had an anal STI, in comparison to about one out of 22 (4.5%) regarding the individuals that has maybe maybe not utilized lube. Over two-thirds (68%) of individuals identified as having an anal STI had utilized a lube in comparison to one-third (32%) who’d maybe perhaps not utilized a lube. If the scientists looked over other facets such as condom usage, amount of lovers, how frequently somebody had intercourse, their sex, or HIV status, the analysis indicated that the employment of some lubes for rectal intercourse may boost the threat of finding a rectal sti by about 3 times.
Just What Exactly Performs This Suggest?
Definitive conclusions can’t be made according to these studies alone. The researchers looked at the effects of lube in a test tube in the first study. This will not inform us in regards to the effectation of utilizing lube during sexual intercourse. Whether or not lubes may damage anal muscle, it might be that their usage results much more good than damage. Utilizing a lube during intercourse helps it be more unlikely that a condom will break or slip down. This alone decreases the possibility of HIV or STI transmission. Even if condoms aren’t utilized, lube usage may reduce injury to anal tissues, reducing the danger for illness with HIV or any other STI. It is impossible for all of us to understand with this research whether utilizing lube during anal intercourse, with or with no condom, will certainly reduce or increase problems for tissue that is anal influence the danger for disease with HIV or any other STI.
The 2nd research shows a correlation involving the usage of lubes as well as the transmission of STIs. Nonetheless, correlation and causality are a couple of various things: a analytical correlation doesn’t show a relationship that is causal. The scientists attempted to exclude other causal facets. But, this sort of analysis cannot rule out all possible causal facets. For instance, individuals who utilize lubes may be much more prone to transfer STIs involving the rectum pornhub.com and penis due to their hands once they use lube before having anal intercourse. Additionally, this research only investigated the connection between lubes and STIs that are certaingonorrhea and chlamydia). This research would not examine HIV transmission so we can not draw conclusions in regards to the outcomes of lube on HIV transmission.
There isn’t enough proof from those two studies to state without a doubt (a) the amount of harm lubes may do towards the rectal muscle whenever useful for rectal intercourse and (b) whether lube usage can impact the possibility of getting HIV or any other STI. More research has to be done to determine what lubes are safe, which lubes can harm rectal muscle, if some lubes tend to be more harmful than the others, and exactly what the consequences of this possible harm on HIV and STI transmission could be.
Truly, individuals must not stop trying making use of lubes in combination with condoms, which offer optimal security during rectal intercourse.
Zak Knowles is CATIE’s supervisor of site content. A sexual health clinic in downtown Toronto before coming to CATIE he worked as an HIV counsellor at Hassle Free Clinic. Zak happens to be managing HIV for 20 years.