An unprecedented survey carried out by the Brazilian Society of Urology (SBU), with data from the Outpatient Information System (SIA) of the Ministry of Health, points out that the number of visits to adolescent boys aged 12 to 18 years by a urologist is 18 times lower than that of attendance of girls by a gynecologist, in the same age group.
In September, for the fifth consecutive year, SBU carries out the #VemProUro campaign, which this year emphasizes the importance of the boy also taking care of his genital and reproductive health. The entity is also engaged in the fight against cancers caused by HPV, urging those responsible to take their teenagers to receive the vaccine.
Karin Anzolch, director of communication at the SBU, recalls that, while most girls, after leaving the pediatrician, continue with frequent health care, periodically going to the gynecologist, being oriented about their general and genital health, the boy suddenly falls into a health care limbo. This often happens because of the idea that seeing a doctor is not necessary; at other times, simply because they don’t know what benefits it brings.
“And then there is a culture that a man only goes to the doctor when he is sick, which ends up causing great harm to himself and to all those who in a certain way interact with him. This is the mentality that must change and the SBU has worked hard for it”, explains Karin Anzolch.
“Perhaps the most important legacy of the entire #VemProUro movement is really the boy’s early approach to health care, including genital health care, so important for quality of life, relationships and global health, whether through the urologist , the general practitioner, the hebiatrician or the family doctor”, he adds.
“So, a culture is maintained that men only go to the doctor when they are sick, which ends up causing great harm to themselves and to all those who in a certain way interact with them”
Karina Anzolch, Communications Director at SBU
Data on general care for adolescents in the Unified Health System (SUS) corroborate the analysis that young boys do not take care of their health. Other 2020 numbers from the SIA showed that girls aged between 12 and 19 had access to the SUS almost 2.5 times that of boys – 10,096,778 girls, against 4,066,710 boys.
Throughout the month of September, SBU will carry out online clarification actions, such as lives and videos, on its profile on the social networks of Portal da Urologia (@portaldaurologia). There will also be online lectures by urologists in schools for teenagers. And on the website (www.portaldaurologia.org.br) there are contents with themes aimed at teenagers.
This year, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), in particular HPV, and the importance of vaccination in the early period of adolescence, before the first sexual intercourse will be addressed. HPV is the leading cause of cervical cancer and is also associated with penile cancer. Data from the Ministry of Health indicate that less than 40% of male adolescents have both doses of the HPV vaccine.
Other figures from the Ministry of Health, obtained exclusively by the SBU, show that in 2021 there were 189,943 female consultations by gynecologists aged between 12 and 18 years, against 10,673 male consultations by urologists at these same ages, equivalent to about 18 times love us. In 2020, there were 165,925 female consultations by gynecologists and 7,358 male consultations by urologists.
“These numbers emphasize the existing discrepancy between health care between the sexes in adolescence. Going to the doctor on a regular basis is present in the lives of girls, while the visit to the urologist is, in general, limited to the presence of some acute illness. of the genitourinary tract, uncommon at this stage of life”, analyzes Daniel Zylbersztejn, coordinator of the campaign.
STIs among young people Among the most common STIs among adolescents are syphilis, herpes simplex, chancroid, HPV, lymphogranuloma venereum, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, hepatitis B and C and HIV. A survey conducted by the SBU in 2020 with this audience found that 44% of respondents did not use a condom at the first sexual intercourse and 35% do not use it or use it rarely. 38.57% of the boys said they did not even know how to put on a condom.
“The current generation has not lived the fear of AIDS like previous generations, when there were numerous campaigns for the use of condoms. It is due to this reduction in educational campaigns that we are seeing alarming data like these”, comments José Murillo Bastos Netto, coordinator of the Department of Adolescent Urology at the SBU.
IN THE DOCTOR
When the teenager comes
consultation with a urologist,
Several questions are evaluated:
Physical development and nutrition
general health conditions
Notions about correct hygiene of the body and genitals
Identification and preventive measures for the development of future diseases, such as hereditary and behavioral factors
Testicular examination and guidance on self-examination for abnormalities such as varicocele (enlarged veins in the testicles that can lead to infertility)
Poorly descended testes and organ tumors (whose highest risk age starts around 14 to 15 years old)
Responsible parenting and prevention of unwanted pregnancies
Correct use of condoms
Excess skin on the penis
Questions about sexuality and genital development, such as penis size (a frequent question)
Evaluation of the vaccination record
Guidelines for starting sexual life