Study may contribute to development of recommendations for safe pubic hair removal

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Pubic hair grooming is a widespread practice and about a quarter of people who groom reported grooming-related injuries in a national survey, according to a new article published by JAMA Dermatology.

A better understanding of how grooming may lead to injury is warranted because of the high prevalence of pubic hair grooming.

Benjamin N. Breyer, M.D., M.A.S., of the University of California, San Francisco, and coauthors conducted a web-based survey designed to be representative of the U.S. population to collect data on grooming behavior.

Of the 7,570 men and women who completed the survey, 5,674 of 7,456 (76.1 percent) reported a history of grooming. Grooming-related injury was reported by 1,430 groomers, a weighted prevalence of 25.6 percent, according to the results.

Laceration (a cut) was the most common reported injury followed by burns and rashes. There were 79 injuries among the 5,674 groomers (1.4 percent) that required medical attention, the authors note. For both men and women, the frequency of grooming and the degree of grooming, such as removing all pubic hair multiple times, were risk factors associated with injury.

Limitations of the study include that some individuals may not have answered the survey truthfully because pubic hair grooming is a sensitive subject.

"This study may contribute to the development of clinical guidelines or recommendations for safe pubic hair removal," the authors conclude.

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