Health & Spirit

Shaving Points

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

One of the most famous point-shaving scandals of all time involved a handful of underworld bookies, some gangsters and the 1978-79 Boston College basketball team. (Point shaving is when a player tries to manipulate the score to fit a bet.) But it didn't work out too well for the co-conspirators; they all ended up suffering a serious case of imprisonment.

So, if you're considering shaving your underworld, let us give you a few points to consider so that you don't come down with serious health threats of your own. We bring this up because shaving pubic hair has been a hot topic of discussion since a University of California San Francisco/San Francisco General Hospital study was published online in December 2016.

In it, researchers reported that people who removed all their pubic hair more than 11 times a year (extreme groomers) had the highest rate of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). High-frequency groomers (daily/weekly trimming) had about 10 percent fewer STIs than the extremists, and nonextreme groomers had half the number. The researchers concluded that "pubic hair grooming was positively related to self-reported STI history."

It could be that shaving causes nicks, which can become infected. But the researchers didn't say if extreme groomers were practicing safe sex. That's a big omission. If they were, then there's clearly a health risk to extreme grooming. However, if extreme groomers are having unprotected sex with multiple partners, well, then the results are about what you'd expect. Our advice? If you're an extreme groomer, be extremely careful -- and not just about shaving.


Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c) 2017 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.


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