Research Modify: Are Lubes Secure for Rectal Intercourse?

The outcome of two scientific tests had been released this year (in the Global Microbicides Conference) which, some may think, phone into question the security of utilizing lubricants for rectal intercourse. Exactly what do these outcomes reveal? Could be the proof sufficient to alter our safer intercourse texting? we do not think therefore — take a look at the explanation for the reason we don’t believe our texting about lube usage for rectal intercourse should alter.

Lubes and Tissue Damage

For just one associated with the studies, researchers analyzed various lubricants (lubes) in a lab. They unearthed that lots of the lubes russianbrides had greater levels of dissolved salts and sugars than ordinarily present in a mobile. Due to this, a few of the lubes had an effect that is toxic the anal tissue studied in a test pipe within the lab. This caused anal tissues to be stripped away. 1 If these items have actually the effect that is same found in individuals, the damaged anal tissue could possibly be more susceptible to HIV as well as 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 associated with lubes were calculated and four (Astroglide, Elbow Grease, ID Glide and KY Jelly) had been discovered to attract 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 were discovered to remove cells within the exterior layer of anal muscle. Two associated with the lubes, Prй and Wet Platinum, caused reasonably small harm.

Lubes and Intimately Sent Infections

The 2nd research discovered that gents and ladies who reported making use of lubes for receptive anal intercourse in past times had been around three times prone to have rectal STI once they had been tested during the study compared to those whom would not report using a lube. This increased risk for an STI had been current whether or not a condom ended up being used. 2

Between October 2006 and December 2008, 879 gents and ladies from a microbicide that is rectal effort had been surveyed about their intimate behaviour and had been tested for just two anal STIs (gonorrhea and chlamydia). Somewhat not even half associated with the research individuals (421) reported having receptive anal sex in the year that is past. Regarding the 229 males and 192 women that had had anal that is receptive, intimate behavior interviews and anal tests for chlamydia and gonorrhea had been readily available for 302 of the study individuals. In this team, about three-quarters (230) said that they had utilized a lube the past time they’d rectal intercourse. Of these, 67% utilized a lube that is water-based 28% utilized a silicon-based lube, 17% utilized an oil-based lube ( ag e.g., Crisco), and 6% used numbing lubes. These figures soon add up to a lot more than 100% because some people utilized one or more variety of lube.

Anal gonorrhea or chlamydia had been present in 5.6% of women and 10.2% of males. About one out of nine (11.7%) associated with individuals who used lube the time that is last had rectal intercourse had an anal STI, in comparison to about one out of 22 (4.5%) associated with individuals that has 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 perhaps perhaps perhaps not utilized a lube. Once the researchers looked over other facets such as condom usage, wide range of lovers, how many times some body had sex, their sex, or HIV status, the analysis revealed that the employment of some lubes for anal intercourse may raise the threat of finding A sti that is rectal by 3 x.

Just What Exactly Performs This Mean?

Definitive conclusions is not made according to these studies alone. In the 1st research, the scientists viewed the consequences of lube in a test pipe. This doesn’t inform us in regards to the effectation of utilizing lube during sex. Whether or not lubes can harm anal muscle, it could be that their usage results much more good than damage. Utilizing a lube while having sex causes it to be more unlikely that a condom shall break or slip off. This alone decreases the possibility of HIV or STI transmission. Even though condoms are not utilized, lube usage may reduce injury to anal tissues, reducing the danger for illness with HIV or any other STI. It is impossible for people to understand with this research whether making use of lube during anal intercourse, with or with no condom, wil dramatically reduce or increase injury to anal muscle or impact the danger for disease with HIV or any other STI.

The second study shows a correlation involving the usage of lubes as well as the transmission of STIs. But, correlation and causality are a couple of various things: a analytical correlation will not show a causal relationship. The scientists attempted to exclude other factors that are causal. But, this sort of analysis cannot rule out all possible factors that are causal. For instance, individuals who utilize lubes may be much more prone to transfer STIs involving the rectum and penis using their hands if they use lube before having anal intercourse. Also, this research only investigated the connection between lubes and specific STIs (gonorrhea and chlamydia). This research failed to glance at HIV transmission so we can’t draw conclusions in regards to the outcomes of lube on HIV transmission.

The Verdict

There isn’t evidence that is sufficient those two studies to state without a doubt (a) simply how much harm lubes can perform into the rectal muscle whenever employed for anal intercourse and (b) whether lube use can impact the possibility of getting HIV or any other STI. More research should be performed to see which lubes are safe, which lubes can harm rectal muscle, if some lubes tend to be more harmful than the others, and exactly exactly what the consequences of this feasible 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 coping with HIV for two decades.