British Journal of Sexual Medicine - 2002

Comment: The national strategy for sexual health and HIV
Paul Woolley
pp 4-6
At the end of the 1980s it was realised that workloads in genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinics had risen considerably. Factors seen to be responsible for this were an increase in sexually transmitted infections (STIs) generally within the population, an increased awareness of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) brought about by national publicity campaigns and higher expectations and demands of patients.
'It will make you go blind' – the history of masturbation
David J Kellock
pp 8-12
Masturbation. The mere mention of this word makes those listening become noticeably uncomfortable, and yet in The national survey of British sexual attitudes and lifestyles (1994) the prevalence of masturbation was found to be 82% in males and 75% in females, with 25% of these having experienced masturbation in the previous seven days. After heterosexual vaginal intercourse (which occurs in the sexually active in 92.7% of males and 93.7% of females), masturbation is the most frequently reported form of sexual activity.
Community treatment of genital warts
Paul Woolley
pp 14-16
During 1999 there was a record total of 1.2 million attendances at genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinics in the UK. Although some of this increase was due to asymptomatic individuals requesting screening for infection after having put themselves ‘at risk’, there was also a dramatic rise in the number of cases of significant sexually transmitted infections (STIs), such as gonococcal and chlamydial infections. With limited secondary care funding, there has been considerable strain on GUM services to see such patients as soon as possible, to reduce both transmission and the risk of complications.
Chlamydia trachomatis infection and subfertility
John Hare
pp 18-20
Damage caused by Chlamydia trachomatis is a major cause of subfertility in women. The organism appears to have a more devastating effect than gonococcus on the fallopian tubes, possibly mediated by a hyperimmune reaction. The key to reducing the prevalence of this condition is prevention through improved contact tracing, a low threshold for the diagnosis of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and a readiness to give antibiotics either therapeutically or prophylactically in appropriate clinical situations.
Starting HIV therapy – expectations and issues
Jack Summerside
pp 21-22
It’s often difficult for those of us involved in the care and support of people with HIV to carry on seeing each person, each time, as individuals facing difficult decisions about their future. Our own expectations and beliefs are often different from those of the people we seek to serve, sometimes quite different indeed. Being diagnosed with HIV is still in so many ways a life-changing experience, and for many a very traumatic one. Making decisions about beginning HIV therapy are so much more involved and difficult when it is your own life, future and health in question.
The management of a true hermaphrodite in an Islamic country
Faisal Al Alam, Elijah Oladunni Kehinde, Abdallah Salim Daar and Mohammed Abdulla Albar
pp 24-26
Patients with intersex disorders are best managed in early childhood, or at worst before puberty, to minimise possible psychological sequelae in the patients and their families. Some urologists have suggested that gender assignment, the process by which the sex of rearing in a newborn is decided, must be considered a psychosocial emergency. Consequently, when a case of intersex as serious as a true hermaphrodite is first diagnosed after puberty in an Islamic country such as Oman, the management becomes difficult. This article discusses the ethical dilemmas encountered in the management of a 24-year-old true hermaphrodite, reared as a male in Oman, an Islamic country.
Hypnosex therapy – part 1
Talal Al Rubaie
pp 27-30
The use of hypnosis in sex therapy is still very limited. Most texts on human sexuality make brief, if any, mention of the treatment of sexual problems by hypnosis. A relatively recent survey indicates that the potential of hypnosis remains largely untapped by certified sex therapists in the USA; only 7% of whom use hypnosis in their clinical work. Though there are no parallel figures in Western Europe, there is no reason to believe that the figures would be higher.
What are the chances?
David Hicks
pp 31-31
In a paper from the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, an attempt is made to estimate the relative and absolute risks of acquiring HIV per sexual act, related to the choice of partner, type of sexual contact and condom use. By choosing a partner who has tested negative instead of an untested partner the relative risk of HIV infection can be reduced 47-fold and condom use reduces risk 20-fold. By choosing insertive fellatio rather than insertive anal sex, a risk reduction of 13-fold can be achieved.