Low-cost Traditional Adult Male Circumcision Device

University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 2011 - $20,000

AIDS is a devastating global epidemic responsible for more than 25 million deaths since 1981. Sub-Saharan Africa continues to be the region most heavily affected by HIV, accounting for 67% of HIV cases and 72% of AIDS deaths in 2007. Among a number of interventions that have been attempted to stop the spread of AIDS in Africa, the World Health Organization has found that adult male circumcision is the only biomedical intervention proven effective—removal of the foreskin greatly reduces the number of target cells available for uptake of HIV and other STDs. It is estimated that three million lives could be saved in sub-Saharan Africa alone if safe male circumcision were to become common practice.

To make that a reality, this E-Team is developing the CircoGel, a culturally acceptable, low-cost, simple-to-use, disposable device to perform circumcisions in sub-Saharan Africa. CircoGel is comprised of two parts, a strong solid shell that provides protection against the cut and a latex sleeve that covers the shell. The device was designed based on feedback gathered from several focus groups with ethnic leaders, traditional cutters, and public health officials in Uganda.