A dan­ger­ous sport

Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) - - NEWS -

Tak­ing up the im­por­tance of this rel­a­tively new spe­cialty, the So­cial Chair of the Con­fer­ence, Dr. Pramilla Se­nanayake said that at the pop­u­la­tion con­fer­ence in 1994, there was no men­tion of sex­ual medicine, only con­tra­cep­tion and fam­ily plan­ning. Even to­day, sex­ual medicine is highly un­der-rated and that is why this con­fer­ence is im­por­tant.

“Sri Lanka has made great strides in pub­lic health and re­pro­duc­tive health and also erad­i­cated many dis­eases but a holis­tic ap­proach to sex­ual health is still lack­ing,” she said, cit­ing the global bur­den of dis­ease in which re­pro­duc­tive and sex­ual ill­health ac­counts for 20% in women and 14% in men.

Pick­ing up a few is­sues, Dr. Se­nanayake said that some peo­ple are un­able to vo­cal­ize what their prob­lem is; some­times they present with un­re­lated com­plaints; there is stigma and em­bar­rass­ment; and ser­vice providers are not ad­e­quately trained.

Send­ing rip­ples of laugh­ter through the au­di­ence, she said that sex is “a dan­ger­ous sport”. There are about 114 mil­lion sex­ual acts per day, which re­sults in fun, more than 900,000 con­cep­tions; and 356,000 bac­te­rial and vi­ral in­fec­tions. The con­cep­tions re­sult in 390,000 live births, 290,000 zy­gote (a fer­til­ized egg or ovum cell) wastage, 130,000 spon­ta­neous abor­tions and 90,000 in­duced abor­tions.

The me­dia has a ma­jor re­spon­si­bil­ity she stressed cit­ing two ex­am­ples of re­port­ing else­where in the world: A big head­line on the front-page of a news­pa­per had de­clared, ers and open dis­cus­sions.

“There is a lack of in­for­ma­tion, knowl­edge and op­por­tu­nity for train­ing, with the losers be­ing the pa­tients,” he said, promis­ing that a “glam­orous ar­ray of stars” in the field would be par­tic­i­pat­ing at this big- gest- ever sex­ual health con­fer­ence. It will not be western dic­tated but keep­ing in touch with cul­tural and so­cial needs rel­e­vant to our coun­tries.

This is why “we need to get the word out” about this im­por­tant meet­ing, Dr. Malalasek­era added.

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