Gonorrhea and Sexual Promiscuity Increase Prostate Cancer Risk

Feb 19, 2009 by

Gonorrhea and Sexual Promiscuity Increase Prostate Cancer Risk

A study conducted at the University of Michigan has found that men who had previously suffered from gonorrhea have a higher risk of getting prostate cancer.

Another risk factor is having multiple sex partners – having had more than 25 sexual partners in a man’s lifetime also raises his risk of prostate cancer to over 2.5 times that of men who have had less than six sex partners.

The study was based on the Flint Men’s Health Study, which looked at a group of black men residing in Flint, Michigan. The men were aged 40 to 79. African-American men were looked at specifically in order to try and ascertain why their risk of getting prostate cancer was twice that of white men; their risk of dying from the disease was also double.

Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) which is passed on during sexual intercourse.

“Our results suggest gonorrhea may play a role in the development of prostate cancer in African-American men. Although we are unable to show that gonorrhea directly causes prostate cancer, we suspect the inflammatory effect of the gonorrhea infection may trigger pre-existing cancerous cells to multiply,” said Aruna Sarma, PhD, an assistant research scientist in the Department of Urology at the university’s medical school, the leader of the study.

Other previous studies had also linked STDs to prostate cancer. Further, the human papillomavirus, another STD, had been previously associated with increased risk of cervical cancer.

Seems like part of a healthy and cancer-free lifestyle is the avoidance of sexual promiscuity.

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