Atheism and penile cancer

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The medical journal article Risk Factors and Prevalence of Penile Cancer states:"...in a society where masculinity is defined by and associated with the presence of the phallus, penile cancer affects male self-esteem and may lead to depression. The vexing issue with penile cancer lies in the fact that it is a largely preventable disease, where significant risk factors are modifiable."[1] See also: Atheism and cancer and Atheism and depression and Atheism and self-esteem

According to WebMD, "Penile cancer, or cancer of the penis, is when cells grow out of control on or in a man’s penis."

There are a number of practices positively correlated to atheism/irreligion that increases an individuals risk for penile cancer as can be seen below.

Some of the risk factors related to the development of penile cancer are: lack of male circumcision, sexual promiscuity, HPV virus, AIDS, homosexuality (see: Homosexuality and penile cancer), smoking, obesity, being over the age of 60, and bestiality.[2]

The medical journal article Risk Factors and Prevalence of Penile Cancer states:

...in a society where masculinity is defined by and associated with the presence of the phallus, penile cancer affects male self-esteem and may lead to depression. The vexing issue with penile cancer lies in the fact that it is a largely preventable disease, where significant risk factors are modifiable."[3]

See also: Atheism and depression and Atheism and self-esteem and Atheism and cancer

Atheism, Judaism, United States, South Korea, circumcision and penile cancer

See also: Atheism, circumcision and penile cancer and Circumcision and The Bible and health

The prophet Moses authored the book of Leviticus

Max Neuberger, writing in his "History of Medicine" states concerning the Mosaic laws:

The commands concern prophylaxis and suppression of epidemics, suppression of venereal disease and prostitution, care of the skin, baths, food, housing and clothing, regulation of labour, sexual life, discipline of the people, etc. Many of these commands, such as Sabbath rest, circumcision, laws concerning food (interdiction of blood and pork), measures concerning menstruating and lying-in women, and those suffering from gonorrhoea, isolation of lepers, and hygiene of the camp, are, in view of the conditions of the climate, surprisingly rational.[4]

According to the American Cancer Society:

Circumcision removes all (or part) of the foreskin. This procedure is most often done in infants, but it can be done later in life, too. Men who were circumcised as children may have a much lower chance of getting penile cancer than those who were not. In fact, some experts say that circumcision as an infant prevents this cancer. The same protective effect is not seen if circumcision is done as an adult.

The reason for the lower risk in circumcised men is not entirely clear, but it may be related to other known risk factors. For example, men who are circumcised can’t develop the condition called phimosis, and they don’t accumulate material known as smegma (see the next section). Men with smegma or phimosis have an increased risk of penile cancer. The later a man is circumcised, it's more likely that one of these conditions will occur first.

In weighing the risks and benefits of circumcision, doctors consider the fact that penile cancer is very uncommon in the United States, even in uncircumcised men. Although the American Academy of Pediatrics has stated that the health benefits of circumcision in newborn males outweigh the risks, it also states these benefits are not great enough to recommend that all newborns be routinely circumcised. In the end, decisions about circumcision are highly personal and often depend more on social and religious factors than on medical evidence.[5]

Jewish men, Israel, male circumcision and rarity of penile cancer

The 2017 medical journal article entitled Incidence of penile cancer worldwide: systematic review and meta-analysis published in the Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública/Pan American Journal of Public Health declared: "In contrast, rates among Jewish men born in Israel are reportedly very close to zero."[6]

Circumcision and the rarity of penile cancer in the United States and South Korea

The United States is a religious country (see: United States, irreligion vs. religion and demographics and Sociology of "atheism is un-American" view and American atheism).

Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia founded by an atheist and agnostic, indicated in 2020:

The United States is an outlier with regards to other predominately Christian Western nations. As of 2007, fifty-five percent of newborn males were circumcised, a significant decline from years past. Countries like Australia and Canada have much lower rates of circumcision, and the United Kingdom is considering an outright ban.[7]

The 2019 medical journal article Single-Center Analysis of Human Papillomavirus Infection and P16INK4A Expression among Korean Patients with Penile Cancer published in Biomed Research International states: "The overall incidence in the US is approximately 0.69 cases/100,000 people, although this rate increases with an increasing age at diagnosis. In Korea, primary penile cancer is both rare and rarely reported, accounting for only 74 cases in 2015, which corresponded to only 0.03% of all malignant tumors during that year."[8]

The 2002 journal article entitled Extraordinarily high rates of male circumcision in South Korea: history and underlying causes states:

Currently the circumcision rate for high-school boys is >90% and for those >70 years old is <10%. The circumcision rate in 1945 was <0.1%. When averaged over the whole population, the present South Korean circumcision rate is ~60%; the rate has increased dramatically with time and particularly in the past 20 years, when the estimated number of male circumcisions has exceeded the number of male births. Although circumcision in South Korea has been strongly influenced by American culture, it has never been predominantly neonatal."[9][10]

In 2011, NBC New York reported that penile cancer in the United States was "rare".[11]

Soviet Union and male circumcision

Joseph Stalin's atheistic regime killed tens of millions of people. See also: Atheism and mass murder

The Soviet Union practiced state atheism.

Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia founded by an atheist and agnostic, indicates:

Before glasnost, according to an article in The Jewish Press, Jewish ritual circumcision was forbidden in the Soviet Union. However, David E. Fishman, professor of Jewish History at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, states that, whereas the heder and yeshiva, the organs of Jewish education, "were banned by virtue of the law separating church and school, and subjected to tough police and administrative actions," circumcision was not proscribed by law or suppressed by executive measures. Jehoshua A. Gilboa writes that while circumcision was not officially or explicitly banned, pressure was exerted to make it difficult. Mohels in particular were concerned that they could be punished for any health issue that might develop, even if it arose some time after the circumcision.[12]

In 1964, A.L. Shabad reported in The Journal of Urology: "In the Union of Soviet Socialistic Republics the incidence of penile cancer has varied in recent years from 0.5 to 1 per cent of cancerous diseases."[13] As noted above, the 2019 medical journal article Single-Center Analysis of Human Papillomavirus Infection and P16INK4A Expression among Korean Patients with Penile Cancer published in Biomed Research International states: "In Korea, primary penile cancer is both rare and rarely reported, accounting for only 74 cases in 2015, which corresponded to only 0.03% of all malignant tumors during that year."[14] (South Korea has adopted the religious United States' practice of male circumcision).

Secular Europe and male circumcision

See also: Secular Europe

From a global perspective, Europe is more secular/atheistic than the rest of the world although it does have a considerable amount of religious immigrants who have higher birth rates (see: Secular Europe and Atheist population and Global atheism).

In 2012, the BBC reported in an article entitled Circumcision, the ultimate parenting dilemma:

While Europe increasingly questions the practice of circumcising boys, US paediatricians are about to say that the medical case for it is getting stronger. Most US adult men are circumcised, but the number of newborns having the op is falling, and is now below 50% in some states - intensifying the dilemma for parents.[15]

Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia founded by an atheist and agnostic, indicates:

On 1 October 2013, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a non-binding resolution in which they state they are "particularly worried about a category of violation of the physical integrity of children," and included in this category "circumcision of young boys for religious reasons." On 7 October, Israel's president Shimon Peres wrote a personal missive to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, to stop the ban, arguing: "The Jewish communities across Europe would be greatly afflicted to see their cultural and religious freedom impeded upon by the Council of Europe, an institution devoted to the protection of these very rights." Two days later, Jagland clarified that the resolution was non-binding and that “Nothing in the body of our legally binding standards would lead us to put on equal footing the issue of female genital mutilation and the circumcision of young boys for religious reasons.”[16]

A number of male circumcision bans have been proposed by various Europeans.[17]

England/Wales/United States/Australia, male circumcision and penile cancer

A study reported that England and Wales had the highest incidence and mortality rates of penile cancer compared to Australia and US and also the lowest infant circumcision rates and overall circumcision prevalence.[18]

England (highlighted in light green), showing the boundaries of the ceremonial counties.

As noted above, the United States is a religious country (see: United States, irreligion vs. religion and demographics and Sociology of "atheism is un-American" view and American atheism).

The UK and Australia are more irreligious/nonreligious than the United States (see: British atheism and UK and secularism and Irreligion in Australia).

The 2015 journal article Trends in penile cancer: a comparative study between Australia, England and Wales, and the US reported:

The overall incidence of penile cancer in England and Wales (1.44 per 100,000 man-years) was higher than in Australia (0.80 per 100,000), and the US (0.66 per 100,000). Incidence of penile cancer in all three countries has remained relatively stable over time. Similarly, although the mortality rates were also higher in England and Wales (0.37 per 100,000 man-years) compared to Australia (0.18 per 100,000) and the US (0.15 per 100,000), the mortality/incidence ratios were similar for all three countries.

England and Wales had the highest incidence and mortality rates of penile cancer compared to Australia and US and also the lowest infant circumcision rates and overall circumcision prevalence. This offers some support to previous data suggesting infant circumcision may reduce risk of penile cancer. However, despite having higher circumcision rates in the US, the incidence of penile cancer in Australia and the US were similar, suggesting that the penile cancer incidence is not solely attributable to circumcision rates.[19]

See also: Atheism, bestiality and penile cancer and Bestiality and Britain and Bestiality and Australia

Irreligious Sweden, circumcision and penile cancer

Sweden had a rate of 2.1 people with penile cancer per 100,000 people between the years of 2000-2012 (Sweden is one of the most atheistic counties in the world and the website adherents.com reported that in 2005 46 - 85% of Swedes were agnostics/atheists/non-believers in God.[20]). [21]

Scandinavia is considered to consist of the countries of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. The male circumcision rate in Scandinavia is approximately 1-2%.[22][23] See also: Bestiality and Sweden

Atheism, promiscuity and penile cancer

See also: Atheism and sexual immorality articles and Atheism and morality

Denmark is the third most atheistic country in the world and the website adherents.com reports that 43 - 80% of Danes are agnostics/atheists/non-believers in God.[24]

In 2009, Suzanne Ost reported in her book published by Cambridge University Press, that the child pornography material produced in Denmark (and Holland) still constituted the largest part of child pornography that was currently available, having been transferred into digital format and uploaded onto the internet.[25] See: Atheism and child pornography

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is positively correlated to promiscuity and penile cancer.[26]

In 2018, the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention indicated in "Promiscuous sexual behaviour can increase the chance of HPV infection and was also associated with increased risk of penile cancer (Madsen et al., 2008; Chaux et al., 2013)."[27]

A Quartz website article indicates:

Evidence suggests that religion and sexual behavior are often linked. Many major religions, such as Christianity, Judaism, Islam and some traditional religions, promote lifestyles emphasizing fidelity and underscoring the importance of caring for one’s family. And a large body of research suggests that such religions may be especially attractive to people who value such commitments—perhaps precisely because those religions help to reinforce their own lifestyle choices...

Still, knowing the perceived connection between faith and sexual commitment, we suspected that people may see atheists, relative to believers, as less likely to endorse values like monogamy and caring for one’s family—values associated with being sexually committed.

In such people’s minds, sexually uncommitted behavior is linked to several other traits and social behavior, such as opportunism and being impulsive—traits that hardly inspire trust [28]

The Barna Group found that atheists and agnostics in America were more likely, than theists in America, to look upon the following behaviors as morally acceptable: illegal drug use; excessive drinking; sexual relationships outside of marriage; abortion; cohabitating with someone of opposite sex outside of marriage; obscene language; gambling; pornography and obscene sexual behavior; and engaging in homosexuality/bisexuality.[29]

Atheism, homosexuality, AIDS and penile cancer

See also: Homosexuality and penile cancer and Atheism and homosexuality

AIDS is a risk factor for penile cancer.[30]

AIDS/HIV is more common among men who have sex with men.

In 2017, the Centers for Disease Control reported:

Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with mena are the population most affected by HIV in the United States. In 2017, adult and adolescent gay and bisexual menb made up 70% (27,000) of the 38,739 new HIV diagnosesc in the United States (US) and dependent areas.d Approximately 492,000 sexually active gay and bisexual men are at high risk for HIV; however, we have more tools to prevent HIV than ever before.[31]

The conservative journalist Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth wrote: "Anyone who has researched the subject of homosexuality knows that many of the most staunch advocates of homosexuality are those who hold a decidedly secular outlook."[32]

Given the many diseases associated with homosexuality, the biblical prohibition against homosexuality is quite arguably one of the many examples where the Bible exhibited knowledge that was ahead of its time.

At the same time, atheistic communist regimes in history historically have often taken a negative view of homosexuality and within Western World atheism, there is a segment of that atheist population which takes a negative view of homosexuality (See: Atheism and the persecution of homosexuals).

As noted above, the Barna Group found regarding atheism and morality that those who hold to the worldviews of atheism or agnosticism in America were more likely, than theists in America, to look upon the following behaviors as morally acceptable: illegal drug use; excessive drinking; sexual relationships outside of marriage; abortion; cohabitating with someone of opposite sex outside of marriage; obscene language; gambling; pornography and obscene sexual behavior; and engaging in homosexuality/bisexuality.[33]

Soviet Union founder Vladimir Lenin, a militant atheist, had a homosexual relationship with Cheka leader Grigory Zinoviev.[34]

Atheism/irreligion, smoking and penile cancer

See also: Atheism and smoking

Paris street photo of a man smoking.

In 2015, according to survey data, 29% of France's population identified as atheists and 63% identified as non-religious.[35]

Tourists visiting France often cite smoking as the first culture shock they experience.[36] A survey by travel website Tripadvisor reported that users found that France was by far the "smokiest" country in the world.[37] See also: Atheism and smoking

Smoking is a risk factor for penile cancer.[38]

The abstract of the 2012 International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine journal article entitled Religion and smoking: a review of recent literature indicates:

Tobacco smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke are a major threat to human health worldwide. The effort to prevent tobacco use should be regarded as an important public health strategy. Given the significance of religion and spirituality in the daily life of more than 90% of the world's population, the relationship of religion and smoking should be seen as a critical research area. Religions are many and varied, but most value human well-being highly and so do not approve of tobacco use, even though they do not prohibit it entirely. In recent years, researchers have shown more interest in the subject of religion and health, including drug and tobacco use. Differences of focus and methodology notwithstanding, most studies have ascertained a deterrent role for religion as regards tobacco use, and several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the negative relationship between religion or spirituality and smoking.[39]

The 2017 journal article Smoking and Religion: Untangling Associations Using English Survey Data published in the Journal of Religion and Health indicates: "Highest levels of smoking characterise people not professing any religion... An association between smoking and the absence of a religious affiliation is sustained. An understanding of the association between smoking and religion is essential to the development of tobacco control programmes."[40]

Atheism, obesity and penile cancer

See also: Atheism and obesity

China has the largest atheist population in the world.[41] In 2014, the British medical journal Lancet reported that the Chinese now have the second highest obesity rate in the world.[42][43]

A recent study published in the Obesity Reviews journal, found that Chinese teenagers' rate of diabetes was four times that of their American peers.[44]

The 2016 medical journal article Obesity is associated with increased risk of invasive penile cancer indicates: "Obesity was significantly associated with an increased risk of developing penile cancer. For every five-unit increase in BMI the risk of invasive penile cancer increased by 53 % (OR 1.53, 95 % CI 1.29-1.81, p < 0.0001)".[45]

The current atheist population mostly resides in East Asia (particularly China) and in secular Europe/Australia primarily among whites.[46] Most atheists are East Asians (see: Asian atheism). See: Global atheism and Western atheism and race

Secular Europe and communist China have significant problems with obesity (see: Secular Europe and obesity and China and obesity). In addition, Australia has a significant problem with obesity (see: Australia, irreligion and obesity).

In the United States at the present time, the greater the degree of irreligiosity in a generation, the higher their obesity rate is.

According to the Gallup Inc., "Very religious Americans are more likely to practice healthy behaviors than those who are moderately religious or nonreligious."[47]

Gallup declared concerning the study which measured the degree to which religiosity affects health practices: "Generalized linear model analysis was used to estimate marginal scores all five reported metrics after controlling for age (in years), gender, race/ethnicity, marital status, education (number of years), log of income, and region of the country... Results are based on telephone interviews conducted as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index survey Jan. 2-July 28, 2010, with a random sample of 554,066 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, selected using random-digit-dial sampling.[48]

Global atheism, aging populations and penile cancer

Atheism is in decline worldwide, with the number of atheists falling from 4.5% of the world's population in 1970 to 2.0% in 2010 and projected to drop to 1.8% by 2020.[49] See: Global atheism statistics

See also: Global atheism and aging populations

As noted above, one of the risk factors for penile cancer is being over 60 years old.[50]

The current global atheist population mostly resides in East Asia (particularly China) and in secular Europe/Australia primarily among whites.[51] See: Global atheism

2.1 births per woman is a replacement level of births in a society. Atheists have a below replacement level of fertility (See: Atheism and fertility rates).

As a result of having a below replacement level of births, global atheism is facing significant challenges in terms of aging populations in East Asia and Europe and atheism is expected to shrink in terms of its market share of the world's population (see: Global atheism and aging populations and Desecularization and aging populations and Desecularization and Causes of desecularization).

On the other hand, there are studies that show the religious people live longer (see: Atheism and life expectancy).

Atheism, bestiality and penile cancer

See also: Atheism, bestiality and penile cancer and Atheism and bestiality and Bestiality and Britain and Bestiality and Sweden

There is a positive correlation between engaging in bestiality and penile cancer.[52][53][54]

The United States is far more religious than secular Europe (see: Global atheism and American atheism). Secular Europe recently had a notable problem with bestiality (see: Bestiality and secular Europe).

A 2014 study found that the incidence rate of penile cancer in the USA is 0.58 per 100,000. In Europe, the incidence rate of the disease is 1.33 per 100,000.[55]

A Brazilian medical study found that men who engaged in bestiality were twice as likely to develop penile cancer.[56]

In areas of the Western World where there is a significant amount of atheists, there have been notable problems related to bestiality (see: Bestiality and various geographic areas and Atheism and bestiality).

A 2015 Jerusalem Post article indicates "Copenhagen has for long been the bestiality capital of Europe and has attracted many tourists mainly visiting to have sex with animals. Legislation against this practice was only enacted this year."[57]

Vice News, a global news channel which broadcasts documentaries about current topics, reported in 2014 concerning secular Europe:

Bestiality is having a weird renaissance in Europe. Perhaps ironically, it kicked off when activists succeeded in banning the practice in places like Germany and Norway. In the background, something else emerged simultaneously: an animal-sex-tourism industry, which has been blossoming in Denmark.[58]

The journal article Sex with Animals (SWA): Behavioral Characteristics and Possible Association with Penile Cancer. A Multicenter Study points out that bestiality is positively correlated to penile cancer. [59]

According to the Medical Xpress website:

The new study, published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, finds a link between bestiality and penile cancer.

The study, led by urologist Stenio de Cassio Zequi in San Paulo, looked at 492 men from rural Brazil. The men participating ranged in age from 18 to 80. Of the 492 men, 118 had been diagnosed with penile cancer.

Of the 188 men with penile cancer, 45 percent had sexual relations with animals compared with 32 percent of the healthy males. Of those men who had sexual relations with animals, 59 percent reported having sex with animals for one to five years and 21 percent had been doing it for more than five years.

Sexual interaction occurred as often as daily and included animals such as horses, cows, pigs and chickens.

Researchers believe that sexual interaction between humans and animals may produce micro-traumas in the penis such as scratches and cuts. They theorize that animal secretions may be toxic to humans and that some unrecognized microorganism may be responsible for the cause of penile cancer.[60]

NBC New York reported:

In a study of 492 men from rural Brazil, 35 percent reprted having had sex with an animal at men who had sex some point in their lives. The report found those men were twice as likely to develop cancer of the penis.

The paper was authored by a team of urologists from centers around Brazil and studied men from age 18 to 80. Men who had had sex with animals also reported a higher incidence of sexually transmitted diseases. Of the 118 penile cancer patients, 45 percent reported having had sex with animals, compared to 32 percent of healthy men. Fifty-nine percent of men who had sex with animals did so for one to five years, while 21 percent continued the behavior, also known as zoophilia, for more than five years.

Men reported having sex as frequently as daily with such animals as mares, cows, pigs and and chickens. Penile cancer accounts for up to 10 percent of cancers in men in Asia, Africa and South America, although it is rare in the U.S.[61]

Atheism, self-esteem, depression and penile cancer

See also: Atheism and depression and Atheism and self-esteem

Atheists have higher rates of suicide than the general population.[62][63][64] Please see: Atheism and suicide

As noted above, the medical journal article Risk Factors and Prevalence of Penile Cancer states:

...in a society where masculinity is defined by and associated with the presence of the phallus, penile cancer affects male self-esteem and may lead to depression. The vexing issue with penile cancer lies in the fact that it is a largely preventable disease, where significant risk factors are modifiable."[65]

The Telegraph reported: "Patients with a strong “intrinsic faith” (a deep personal belief, not just a social inclination to go to a place of worship) recover 70 per cent faster from depression than those who are not deeply religious."[66]

Concerning atheism and depression, a University of Michigan study involving 19,775 individuals found that religious people are less likely than atheists to suffer depression when they are lonely.[67] See also: Atheism and suicide

There are preliminary studies indicating that individuals who reject Christianity in Western cultures have lower self-esteem than the Christian population.[68][69] There are also studies indicating that lower self-esteem is associated with suicidality.[70][71] Atheists have higher rates of suicide than the general population.[72][73][74] At the same time, there is a significant portion of the atheist population who suffer from excess self-esteem/pride issues (see: Atheism and arrogance).

Study: Secular Europe has about twice the rate of penile cancer than the religious United States

Irving Berlin's song God Bless America is a popular American patriotic song written by Berlin in 1918. See: Sociology of "atheism is un-American" view and American atheism

Secular Europe recently had a notable problem with bestiality (see: Bestiality and secular Europe).

As noted above, there is a positive correlation between engaging in bestiality and penile cancer.

In the United States, Pew Research survey data indicates that the percentage of atheists in the United States has remained at 4% from 2015 to July 2019.[75] See: American atheism

The 2017 medical journal article entitled Incidence of penile cancer worldwide: systematic review and meta-analysis published in the Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública/Pan American Journal of Public Health indicated: "Penile cancer is a rare malignancy, especially in developed countries, in which the annual incidence is below 1 case per 100,000 men."[76]

As noted above, penile cancer is rare in the United States.[77]

The 2014 medical journal article Risk Factors and Prevalence of Penile Cancer which was published in the West Indian Medical Journal indicates: "The incidence rate of penile cancer in the USA is 0.58 per 100,000. In Europe, the incidence rate of the disease is 1.33 per 100,000."[78]

The Brazilian study noted above, indicates that men who engage in bestiality have twice the rate of penile cancer.[79]

On the other hand, a 2017 metastudy reported that North America (Includes United States and Canada) had a rate of penile cancer cases of .91 people per 100,000 people and Europe had a rate of .90 penile cancer cases per 100,000 people.[80] At the same time, in recent years there has been a very rapid growth of Christianity in Eastern Europe/Central Europe (see: Central and Eastern Europe and desecularization). Western Europe has a population of about 196,155,565. Central Europe has a population of around 165 million people. Eastern Europe has a population of around 293,000,000.

Metastudy on penile cancer and some irreligious/nonreligious countries

A 2017 metastudy on penile cancer reported that: the Socialist Republic of Romania (Marxist-Leninist one-party communist/atheist state) had a 7.2 people with penile cancer per 100,000 people between the years of 1983- 1987; Vietnam (Vietnam has state atheism) had a rate of 2.34 people with penile cancer per 100,000 people between the years of 1991-1993; and Sweden had a rate of 2.1 people with penile cancer per 100,000 people between the years of 2000-2012 (Sweden is one of the most atheistic counties in the world and the website adherents.com reported that in 2005 46 - 85% of Swedes were agnostics/atheists/non-believers in God.[81]). [82]

Scandinavia is considered to consist of the countries of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. The male circumcision rate in Scandinavia is approximately 1-2%.[83][84] See also: Bestiality and Sweden

See also

References

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  30. HIV and Gay and Bisexual Men
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