Can a vir­gin get preg­nant?

Jamaica Gleaner - - NEWS - Email ques­tions to Doc at sat­ur­daylife@glean­ and read more in the ‘Out­look Mag­a­zine’ to­mor­row.

Q Doctor, am I right in think­ing that if I make sure that I re­main a vir­gin, I can­not get preg­nant?

I am 19 years old and I have a lov­ing boyfriend. Be­fore I met him, I had var­i­ous kinds of sex­ual re­la­tions with other guys, like pet­ting and so on, but I have never al­lowed any of them to en­ter the vagina. There­fore, I know that my hy­men is in in­tact, es­pe­cially since I do not use tam­pons.

When I am with my present boyfriend, we do a lot of fool­ing around. My par­ents do not know about this. Ba­si­cally, we do a lot of hand-pet­ting and stuff, plus a lit­tle oral. I would usu­ally make him or­gasm. I have not or­gasmed yet, but I have strong feel­ings and I think it might hap­pen soon.

So what I want to know is this: Am I to­tally safe from preg­nancy if I make sure that I avoid ac­tual in­ter­course? I do not go with any other boys. A Well, I ap­plaud your re­solve to avoid preg­nancy at your young age. If I un­der­stand you cor­rectly, you have per­mit­ted guys to do some things with you, but you have never had vagi­nal in­ter­course.

If you con­tinue like that, then it is un­likely that you will ac­ci­den­tally get preg­nant. The odds are thou­sands to one against.

But is it pos­si­ble for a young woman to be­come preg­nant even though she is still a vir­gin? Yes, very rarely it does oc­cur. I have seen just one case in my en­tire med­i­cal ca­reer. It hap­pened when a ner­vous young bride­groom man­aged to ‘de­posit’ his sem­i­nal fluid just out­side the bride’s vagina. He did not break the hy­men (or vir­gin’s veil), but nine months later, she turned up at our hos­pi­tal in labour – and still a vir­gin.

How do such cases hap­pen? How can a guy’s ‘man-fluid’ get through an in­tact hy­men?

Well, the an­swer is quite sim­ple. Nearly al­ways, a woman’s hy­men has a small gap in it. Why is that? Well, there has to be an aper­ture through which the men­strual flow can pass each month. So in al­most all fe­males, this small hole ex­ists.

Now, I am not quite sure what you have been do­ing while ‘fool­ing around’ with your boyfriend, but the im­por­tant thing is that if he dis­charges, you should not al­low his sem­i­nal fluid any­where near the open­ing of your vagina.

One lit­tle word of warn­ing to young women who al­low this kind of fool­ing around is that although that type of ‘pet­ting’ will not get you preg­nant, it can some­times pass on sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted in­fec­tions. So please, young ladies, be care­ful. Hi, Doc. I am a guy of 18 with a ter­ri­ble prob­lem. I went to bed with a girl last week. This was the third time in my life.

I thought it was all go­ing well un­til she looked at my or­gan and said: ‘Oh, I’m not hav­ing that in­side me!’

I asked her what was wrong, and she said, ‘The end of it looks funny!’ Doctor, I was so up­set and em­bar­rassed. Even­tu­ally, I worked out that what she meant was that the skin at the end is too tight so that it is not ‘go­ing back’ prop­erly.

I think this must be a re­cent thing, Doc. When I was younger, I am sure that when I got an erection, the dark, smooth part of my or­gan was com­pletely vis­i­ble. But now, only part of it is vis­i­ble. The rest is cov­ered by the fore­skin.

So what can I do, Doc? Please do not tell me to get a cir­cum­ci­sion op­er­a­tion! I am ter­ri­fied of hav­ing a knife any­where near my or­gan. A The prob­lem of tight fore­skin is an ex­tremely com­mon one. Many young guys (prob­a­bly around five per cent) find that when they have an erection, the skin will not ‘go back’ prop­erly. That con­di­tion is called ‘phi­mo­sis’.

That is not a very hy­gienic sit­u­a­tion be­cause germs can breed un­der a fore­skin that won’t go back. Also, a tight fore­skin is likely to in­ter­fere with sex­ual func­tion, for in­stance, by im­pair­ing sen­sa­tion, and it can be very painful.

Now you are scared of ‘the knife’. That is quite un­der­stand­able, but I have some good news for you. It is not al­ways nec­es­sary to do a cir­cum­ci­sion op­er­a­tion.

In­deed, one of the world’s lead­ing med­i­cal jour­nals re­cently an­nounced that the first-line treat­ment for use by doc­tors who are treat­ing phi­mo­sis should be just a steroid cream. Steroids are cor­ti­sone-like med­i­ca­tions, which damp down in­flam­ma­tion, and tend to shrink swollen tis­sues.

So you re­ally should go and see a doctor right away. He will ex­am­ine you, and tell you if such a cream would help shrink the fore­skin. I imag­ine he will pre­scribe some­thing like be­tametha­sone cream twice a day for four weeks.

But if that doesn’t work out, you should def­i­nitely con­sult a urol­o­gist. She will tell you whether a lit­tle trim­ming of your fore­skin would be a good idea. My friends and I have been of­fered the morn­ing-af­ter pill on Twit­ter. To be hon­est, Doc, there are times when this med­i­ca­tion would be use­ful to have.

Should I go ahead and buy it? A No way! The so-called morningafter pill’, which is more ac­cu­rately re­ferred to as ‘the emer­gency con­tra­cep­tive’, is quite a pow­er­ful drug.

To sell it through Twit­ter, or any other form of so­cial me­dia, is ac­tu­ally il­le­gal un­der the Phar­macy Act. These things are only sup­posed to be dis­pensed by a qual­i­fied phar­ma­cist.

Also, when you buy stuff in this way, you do not know ex­actly what you are get­ting! It could be real Posti­nor, or it might be some­thing else.

I am not quite sure why you and your friends would find this med­i­ca­tion use­ful, at times. But if you are hav­ing sex with guys, then I strongly rec­om­mend that you use some reg­u­lar and re­li­able form of con­tra­cep­tion. Q Stupidly, I al­lowed a guy to have sex with me last week on the sec­ond day of my menses. I do not know why I did such a thing.

Doc, do you think I will get preg­nant? A As this was on the sec­ond day of your pe­riod, I feel it is un­likely that you will get preg­nant. Not im­pos­si­ble, but un­likely. Q Doc, can you an­swer a dif­fi­cult ques­tion for a group of young peo­ple? How did vene­real dis­ease (VD) start?

We know that in or­der to catch a VD, you have to have sex with some­one who has it, and they must have caught it from some­one else who had the in­fec­tion.

But how did it all start? Some peo­ple think it is some­thing to do with dogs. A No, it is noth­ing to do with dogs. The im­por­tant thing to re­alise is that germs change their na­ture over the years. They can lie around harm­lessly for cen­turies, not caus­ing any prob­lems for hu­mans.

Then they sud­denly go crazy and start at­tack­ing peo­ple and caus­ing se­ri­ous dis­eases. That was what hap­pened with the HIV virus back in the 20th cen­tury.

Sim­i­larly, germs like gon­or­rhoea and syphilis seem to have been liv­ing on Earth thou­sands of years ago, not do­ing any par­tic­u­lar harm. Then they some­how got into the hu­man re­pro­duc­tive tract and, BANG! Peo­ple started get­ting sick with VD.

So be care­ful and prac­tice safe sex!

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