This week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced the authorization of the first-ever condom created specifically for anal sex that will help reduce the transmission of H.I.V. and other sexually transmitted infections.
According to F.D.A, the new rubbers will be manufactured by Boston-based Global Protection Corporation and marketed as the One Male Condom.
Last year, the company asked the F.D.A. to allow for the addition of anal sex as part of the intended use of the condom’s product label subsequent to a study that showed that the slippage failure rate was less than 1%.
The F.D.A. reports that the risk for sexually transmitted diseases is significantly higher during anal sex than vaginal sex.
Courtney Lias, director of the FDA’s Office of GastroRenal, OB-GYN, General Hospital, and Urology Devices, said in a statement:
The F.D.A.’s authorization of a condom that is specifically indicated, evaluated and labeled for anal intercourse may improve the likelihood of condom use during anal intercourse.
…This authorization helps us accomplish our priority to advance health equity through the development of safe and effective products that meet the needs of diverse populations.
Condom use during anal sex has declined in recent years, since the arrival of pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, which involves taking a daily pill as a method to prevent H.I.V. infection.
Although PrEP has made a significant different in the sexual health and experience of those at-risk, there is still a major issue with access and cost.
Dr. Aaron Siegler, an epidemiologist at Emory University who helped lead the study that prompted the F.D.A. decision says to the NYT:
I don’t see condoms versus PrEP as kind of mutually exclusive options, I see them as options that can support each other and that allow people that choice. There isn’t perfect use of any one technology. But if we optimize people’s access to and understanding of different prevention options, I think we can increase the overall population level protection against H.I.V.
The FDA described the One Male Condom as a natural rubber latex sheath that comes in standard, thin and fitted versions to ensure comfort for those who use it. The fitted version is available in 54 different sizes and comes with a paper template to make sure people are using the best size for them. The One Male Condom should be used with a condom-compatible lubricant.
The arrival of the first condom for anal sex opens up opportunity for other companies to manufacture similar products that help build safe and healthy sex lives.
Source: The New York Times