Recent Increase Noted in Pubic Hair Grooming Injuries

Five-fold increase from 2002 to 2010; majority of genitourinary injuries due to razors

MONDAY, Dec. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Over the last decade there has been a five-fold increase in injuries relating to pubic hair grooming presenting to the emergency department, most of which are due to the use of razors, according to research published in the December issue of Urology.

Allison S. Glass, M.D., of the University of California in San Francisco, and colleagues used prospectively collected data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System to identify incidents of genitourinary (GU) injury related to pubic hair grooming during the years 2002 to 2010.

The researchers found that, during this time period, the number of visits reporting to the emergency department related to pubic hair grooming increased five-fold, for an estimated total of 11,704 visits. Slightly more than half (56.7 percent) of these incidents occurred in women, and the average patient age was 30.8 years. Eighty-three percent of these injuries were due to shaving razors. The most common type of injury was laceration (36.6 percent), with the external female genitalia the most common site of injury (36.0 percent). Almost all injuries (97.3 percent) were treated within the emergency department and patients were subsequently discharged.

"The demographics of patients with GU injuries from grooming products largely parallel observations about cultural changes and grooming practices in the United States. Although hair removal products account for a small proportion of GU injuries, the increasing number of incidents in both men and women is an important concern for practitioners," the authors write. "Health care practitioners should consider counseling patients against nonelectric razor use in pubic hair grooming to help prevent injury."

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