09 December 2006

A Question of Size

    ST Dec 8, 2006
    Oversized condoms a headache for many Indian men

    NEW DELHI - Condoms designed to meet international size specifications are too big for many Indian men as their penises fall short of what manufacturers had anticipated, an Indian study has found.

    The Indian Council of Medical Research, a leading state-run centre, said its initial findings from a two-year study showed 60 per cent of men in the financial capital Mumbai had penises about 2.4cm shorter than those condoms catered for.

    For a further 30 per cent, the difference was at least 5cm. A poor fit meant the prophylactics often didn't do the job they were bought for, and led to some tearing or slipping off during use.

    'One of the reasons for a failure of up to 20 per cent (of condoms) is the association of the size of the condom to the erect penis,' the council's Dr Chander Puri said, adding another reason was couples often put them on in a hurry.

    He said many men in India, which has the world's highest HIV positive caseload, were too shy to ask for condoms.

    'We need more vending machines for condoms of different sizes so people can pick a condom with confidence that is suited to their needs,' he said.

    The Times of India reported the ICMR survey had studied 1,400 men between 18-50 years of age in cities like Mumbai and New Delhi as well as in rural areas in a report. It entitled its story 'Indian men don't measure up'. -- REUTERS

After a quick check on the Internet, I have ascertained that it is hardly a problem unique to India. It seems to happen all over the world - men struggle with condoms that are either too big or too small. I guess the nature of the product is that it has to fit very well - there isn't much much margin for error.
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Dr Oz bloke said...

Hey Mr Wang,

I've noticed the quality of your blog entries has dropped quite a bit.

It's more just cut and paste of reports. And the comments aren't even witty anymore.

Writer's block? Or too busy?

Season's Greetings Mr Wang :)

Gilbert Koh aka Mr Wang said...

You are right, good doctor. A combination of different things - I am busy, and also there doesn't seem to be that much happening in Singapore these past few weeks that really catches my eye. Finally, I am thinking of giving up this blog to pursue other interests - it does seem to be somewhat of a pity, though.

angry doc said...

This reminds me of a story...

An SAF Medic who was tasked to distribute condoms to servicemen decided to divide the (one-size-only) stock into three piles on a table, marked 'Large', 'Medium' and 'Small', and asked the servicemen to pick one as they filed past.

Most picked 'Medium'.

Anonymous said...

Straits Times using "headache" as a pun? 0_o

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr Wang, are you seriously considering giving up this blog? It will be a great pity, for I enjoy reading your views and insights about the current affairs, and the nuggets of wisdom regarding financial management. Do hope that you'll change your mind!

And season's greetings too =)

Elia Diodati said...

I guess the nature of the product is that it has to fit very well - there isn't much much margin for error.

Or that too many size queens work for these prophylactics manufacturers. :)

tscd said...

I had no idea that India has the world's highest caseload for HIV. I thought the prize for that went to South Africa.

Anonymous said...

South Africa has probably the highest HIV prevalence rate, at about 15 - 20 % of persons aged 15 and above. With a total population of 40 -45 million, this translates to about 5 million HIV-positives in the country.

India's prevalence rate is around 0.5% of persons aged 15 and above. But since its population is huge, this too translates to 5 million HIV-positives. It is estimated that India's total number of HIV-positives surpassed South Africa's about a year ago.

The report about condoms in India is a bit suspect to me. It talks of length when in the matter of condoms, excess length do not matter at all. One does not have to unfurl the whole thing. What matters is girth/diameter, for this is the thing that provides grip. Yet the report pays scant attention to this factor. One wonders whether the good doctors know what they are researching.

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