According to a medical study by The Indian Council of Medical Research (the country’s top health research institute), Indian men’s penises do not match international sizes and most condoms on sale in the country are too big. Doctors are calling for smaller condoms to be made after the survey.

The institute surveyed 1,400 volunteers from over the country to conduct the “Study on proper length and breadth specification for condoms”. These volunteers had their penises measured precisely, down to the last millimeter. The result found out that 60 percent of men in Mumbai had penises at least 2.4 centimeters (one inch) shorter than international condom sizes and make condoms more likely to slip off. The study was carried out in a bid to improve the sizing of condoms, which have a failure rate of up to 20 percent in India. For a further 30 percent, the difference was at least 2 inches.

Doctor Chander Puri, the director of the council’s National Institute for Research in Reproductive Health commented that there was a need in India for custom-made condoms. “While improper usage is one of the reasons, there is also condom slippage or tear, which is associated with the size of the condom in relation to an erect penis,” said by Dr Chander Puri. “There is anxiety talking about the issue. And normally one feels shy to go to a Chemist’s shop and ask for a smaller size condom”, added Dr Chander Puri.

The effectiveness of condoms in India, which has a growing population of 1.1 billion, is an important issue as they have emerged as a vital safeguard against sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV-AIDS. India has the world’s highest HIV-AIDS caseload, with 5.7 million people living with the illness, according to UN figures.