Medical Officer at the Effia-Nkwanta Hospital in Sekondi, Dr Roland M. Sowa, has cautioned females against the wearing of the skimpy ‘G-string’ underwear, since it has health implications.
He said a research carried out by the hospital indicated that many female genital infections reported at the facility were due to the wearing of the underwear.
Dr Sowa, who is also the Western Regional HIV/AIDS Coordinator, said the string of the underwear facilitated the transfer of organisms from the anus to the vagina.
He gave the caution at an Enhanced HIV/AIDS training for journalists in Takoradi, which was sponsored by the US Embassy and the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
A G-string or thong is a narrow piece of cloth or leather, or plastic that passes between the buttocks. It is attached to a band around the hips.
Dr Sowa explained that the hospital carried out the investigation to establish what accounted for the high rate of infections after observing an unusual trend for some time.
Dr Sowa said after careful examinations and interviews with the patients, it came out that the infections were due to the use of the fashionable underwear.
Explaining the mode of the bacterial infection, Dr Sowa said “the G-string facilitates the transfer of organisms from the anus to the vagina as the string picks up leftovers of human excreta and deposits them in the vagina and ureteral orifice resulting in the infection”.
Cleaning anus in wrong direction
Dr Sowa, who emphasised the seriousness of the issue while taking the journalists through sexually transmitted infections (STIs), said apart from the G-string, cleaning the anus in the wrong direction also accounted for some of the infections.
For women to clean their anus without infections, he said, there was the need for them to clean from down up, “but some will do it from up to down, which swaps vagina and ureteral orifice resulting in the outflow of human waste coming into contact with the vagina”.
“The human excreta which flows from the anus carries organisms that are very infectious if introduced to the vagina,” he added.
Dr Sowa explained that in the past the cloth used as the traditional underwear by women which was in the form of G-string, was thicker, which prevented the transfer of bacteria.
“The modernised form of the cloth now is G-string, which is a thread that freely transports the remaining of human excreta after one attends the call of nature,” he said.