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Paranoid Republican (now Independent) back with question
Sep 13, 2008

Dr. Bob,

Hope you are well.

This time, the question is not about me.

I received the following email from a friend about hair bands, used condoms and HIV. From my understanding, there NO FREAKIN WAY this could happen. It seems like fear mongering at its best and another sign of an unejakated popyulashun thanks Mr. No Child Left Behind. Would be interested in your thoughts.

Stay well.

Email: Check your kids hair bands and make sure they do not put them in their mouth while trying to plait or tie their hair

________________________________________

Be cautious of hair bands at open markets around the city too they are probably from China since they are purchased in bulk very cheap !!!! Take a good look before buying hair bands in future specially like the following kind..

..

These Hair bands were made fromused condomsand threads. That was so disgusting, I would not want to use them!! ..

..

BEIJING (AFP) - Used condoms are being recycled into hair bands in southern China threatening to spread sexually-transmittable diseases they were originally meant to prevent, state media reported Tuesday

In the latest example of potentially harmful Chin ese-made products, rubber hair bands have been found in local markets and beauty salons in Dongguan and Guangzhou cities in southern Guangdong province, China Daily newspaper said.

'These cheap and colorful rubber bands and hair ties sell well ..... threatening the health of local people,' it said. Despite being recycled, the hair bands could still contain bacteria and viruses, it said.

'People could be infected with AIDS, (genital) warts or other diseases if they hold the rubber bands or strings in their mouths while waving their hair into plaits or buns,' the paper quoted a local dermatologist who gave only his surname, Dong, as saying. A bag of ten of the recycled bands sells for just 25 sen (three cents), much cheaper than others on the market, accounting for their popularity, the paper said.

A government official was quoted as saying recycling condoms was illegal. China 's manufacturing industry has been repeatedly tarnished this year by a string of scandals involving shoddy or dangerous goods made for both domestic and foreign markets.

In response, it launched a public relations blitz this summer aimed at playing up efforts to strengthen monitoring systems.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hi,

"Recycled condoms"??? WHAT? Look, I'm all for recycling, but used condoms??? Do you really think Chinese people collect and save spunked-up condoms?

This story has "hoax" written all over it as far as I can tell. Even if there was a condom recycling center right next door to the new Bird's Nest stadium in Beijing and they despunked the icky-sticky latex for reuse, HIV would not be a problem. HIV does not survive very long at all outside the body.

Dr. Bob



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