Men’s Health // Category

Category based archive
24 Sep

appreciate a nice cold glass of water. And you rely on a steady flow of
electricity to your home and work. Many of us also admire how modern technology
keeps us not only engaged and productive but also organized. But when is the
last time you reflected upon the most precious natural resource in our country:
Freedom! I think about this frequently and certainly every time I work with
military families.

Costs of War

Estimates are that 6,900 U.S. troops have been killed in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan since the Iraq War began in 2003. As a consequence, scores of families will fail to form or grow — we’re talking about infertility in its most disastrous and absolute form.

An additional 30,000 troops have
been injured during these three military operations, and about 1 of every 20
injuries affected the male reproductive tract, causing near absolute
infertility. Over a 12-year period ending in 2013, 1,367 men
in our military had genital injuries in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a
recent military
. The most common injuries were to the
scrotum, testicles and penis. Over 10% of men lost one or both
 from these injuries. And, over 94% of
men injured were in peak reproductive age of 35 years or younger. It’s hard to
stay fertile when parts down there are missing or not working anymore.

Keeping the
Jewels Safe

Thankfully, there are systems in place to protect not only the
lives, but the fertility of our troops at war. The most notable of these are:

Sperm banking before deployment. This has long been encouraged by the Pentagon and now they are
thinking about actually funding it.

Pelvic armor. Given the
abundance of ground-level mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), the
military now uses Kevlar underpants. There’s the PUG (protective undergarment)
on the inside and a thicker POG (protective outer garment) worn over combat

Funding infertility care. In
2016, a bill passed in Congress that
provides infertility treatment (up to 3 cycles of IVF) to disabled veterans.

There are some very special fertility doctors doing
amazing work to preserve fertility in cases of catastrophic genital injuries.

Our servicemen not only put their own lives on the line, they
also indirectly place their future families on that same line. As the
award-winning American writer Cynthia Ozick once said, “We often take for
granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.” It is absolutely my
honor to tend to the fertility needs of our military.

This article first appeared on Dr. Turek’s blog.

by N I F T Y A R T ✍🏻
 on Unsplash

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20 Sep

If you’re rich and famous you’ve probably known about
Jeffrey Epstein for a long time. The rest of us have only recently learned
about him from the barrage of news stories with headlines like these:

  • How Jeffrey Epstein’s Death Became a Political
    Football—CNN News
  • Jeffrey Epstein Accuser Jennifer Araoz Sues
    Ghislaine—NBC News
  • Jeffrey Epstein’s Death and Role in “Ponzi
    Scheme” Investigated—CBS News
  • Conspiracy Theories Swamp Jeffrey Epstein Case
    From Fringe to Mainstream—Fox News
  • The Day Jeffrey Epstein Said He Had Dirt on
    Powerful People—New York Times
  • Sasse Demands Barr “Rip Up” 2008 Epstein Deal,
    Bring Co-Conspirators to Justice—New York Post

I’m more interested in what Jeffrey Epstein’s life and death
can tell us about men, women, sex, and power, topics I’ve been studying and
writing about for fifty years. I also want to know how it can help men and
women live fuller, more successful, and joyful lives. 

From the point of view of an evolutionary psychologist,
Jeffrey Epstein was just doing what men have been doing for the last two
million years—Trying to have sex with as many young, beautiful women as he
could and accumulating enough fame and wealth to attract more young, beautiful
women. To do that he had to have a lot of other people, both male and female,
who shared his values and beliefs.

In his book Sex, Power, and Partisanship: How
Evolutionary Science Makes Sense of Our Political Divide, Dr. Hector A.
Garcia, assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University
of Texas Health Science Center, describes “how evolution programmed our minds
with mating strategies to help us reproduce amid a fierce field of competition,
how men and women employ different strategies to achieve reproductive fitness.”

I’ve written about these issues in a series of articles
on The Good Men Manifesto. The most recent article “The
One Fact About Men That Drives Men’s Anger and Fear of Women”
 had a number
of facts that can help us learn from Jeffrey Epstein’s life and death. In the
article, I quote Roy F. Baumeister, one of the world’s leading social
scientists. He has written more than 400 scientific papers and 21 books. In his
book, Is There Anything Good About Men? How Cultures Flourish By
Exploiting Men, he says, “Of all the people who ever reached adulthood, maybe
80% of the women but only 40% of the men reproduced.” He goes on to say,
“That’s a stunning difference. Of all humans ever born, most women became
mothers, but most men did not become fathers. You wouldn’t realize this by
walking through an American suburb today with its tidy couples.” Baumeister
says, “I consider it the single most underappreciated fact about men.”

What are the implications of this one fact? It means that
throughout human history men, like Genghis Khan, the fearsome Mongol warrior of
the 13th century, became rich and famous and had more than his share of young
women and had lots of babies as a result. These practices continue to this day.

The problem for people like Jeffrey Epstein and other “elite
friends and associates” in Epstein’s little black book, which includes Prince
Andrew, Steve Bannon, Bill Clinton, Bill Cosby, Alan Dershowitz, Sarah Ferguson
(Duchess of York), Ted Kennedy, Henry Kissinger, David Koch, Ghislaine Maxwell,
Charlie Rose, Donald Trump, Ivanka Trump, and many others; the era of powerful
men and women who ignore sexual violence as simply “men doing what men do” is

In fact, it ended a hundred years ago when thousands of
women, with support of hundreds of men, fought for and passed the
19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution giving women the right to vote. It
has continued with the #MeToo movement which has broken the silence of
sexual abuse forever. 

According to an article in Time magazine, “The
#MeToo movement has become a worldwide phenomenon, searched for on Google in
196 countries in the past year.” Time named The Silence Breakers as
the 2017 Person of the Year, honoring not one individual, but all of the women
involved – and the cause as a whole.

I recently witnessed the clash of the old and new worlds on
an episode of the Netflix series Outlanders, based on the books by Diana
Gabaldon. In season 1, former World War II nurse Claire Randall and her husband
Frank are visiting Inverness, Scotland, when she is carried back in time to the
18th century from the standing stones at Craigh na Dun. She falls in with a
group of rebel Scottish Highlanders from Clan MacKenzie, who are being pursued
by English redcoats led by Captain Jonathan “Black Jack” Randall. She marries a
Highlander, Jamie Fraser, out of necessity, but they quickly fall in love.

In episode 6, titled The Reckoning, the old world where
men were dominant and controlled their women, clashes with the new world of
gender equality and what Riane Eisler, author of The Chalice and the
Blade, calls the clash between a Dominator system and Partnership

Jamie has told his new wife, Clare, to wait with another clansman
while he takes care of some business. He explained that danger was everywhere
and she should stay just where she was until he returned. She disobeys his
orders, and is captured by Black Jack, taken back to the castle and is about to
be raped when Jamie and his men sneak into the castle and rescue her. 

He plans to punish Clare for disobeying his orders and
putting them all in danger. “None of this would have happened if you’d have
just stayed where I told you,” he says. Clare realizes her error had put
everyone in danger and apologizes. But that’s not enough for him and he demands
that she take her punishment, a belt whipping on her bare bottom. She refuses
and, being stronger, he forces the whipping, and assumes things will now be
fine between them. He has asserted his male authority and she has been properly

But he realizes he has damaged the relationship and has a
change of heart. “This is how my father did things, and his father before him,
and on back through the generations,” Jamie says, “But I love you Clare and I
see things will have to be different between you and me.” He swears on his
sword, his God, and his life that if he ever should strike her again that he
would die by this very sword. Clare is moved and there is a touching love

Yet, that’s not the end of the story. The next time they
make love, with him on top of her and both in ecstatic sexual excitement, she
rolls him over on his back, pulls out her own knife and puts it to his throat
and drawing on the power of a modern-day woman looks down into his fearful eyes
and says, “Jamie Fraser, if you ever raise your hand against me again, I will
cut your heart out.” There’s no doubt that she means it. When women have real
power, men learn to change for the better.

What we’re seeing in Jeffrey Epstein saga, is the last gasp
of the Dominator culture. A small group of men and women benefitted from the
old culture represented by Epstein. A much larger group of men and women will
benefit as the Dominator culture gives way to the Partnership culture where we
can all bring into being, in the words of my colleague Charles
Eisenstein, The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know is Possible.

This article first appeared on Jed’s blog.

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

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18 Sep


Five Key Principles to Sound Prescription Medication Pricing Reform

Congress and policy makers in Washington are intently
focused on how to optimally manage the cost of prescription medications.  Many proposals have already been released,
and it is likely that this focus will continue well into the 2020 elections and
beyond.  This focus is appropriate given
the importance access to medications plays as a cornerstone of the management
of most medical conditions.  It is also
likely that over the next several months and years there will be a myriad of
legislative and regulatory proposals floated, debated and voted on or

Given the profound impact these policy changes will have on
the efficacy of health care in the United States and, most importantly, the
well-being of patients across the country, Men’s Health Network strongly urges
public sector policy makers and regulators as well as private sector payers,
benefit managers and PBM executives to adhere to the following principles to
ensure that proposed reforms are focused on ultimately benefiting patients and optimizing
the costs associated with adhering to prescribed medical therapies.   

Five Key Principles to Sound Prescription Medication Pricing Reform:

These five principles have one commonality – keeping the long-term
best interests of patients in focus.  In
the end that will fulfill the ethical and social obligations of providers,
government and health benefit managers and enhance the care of patients.

As part of our work educating and providing advocacy opportunities
for men, boys and their families, Men’s Health Network will continue to explore
these principles in more depth in the coming weeks. Please check back here on
our blog to follow the series or reach out on social media to engage, ask
questions, and learn more about the policies that impact men’s health. 

Photo by from Pexels

Author: Dr. Salvatore Giorgianni

Credit: Source link

05 Sep

Fatherhood, Parenting

The Future of Fathers

Dear Mr. Dad: This Father’s Day is over, but what advice do you have keep dads involved every day?

A: As someone who spends a lot of time doing research on and writing about fathers—and even more time trying to be a good dad—I agree that the fact that the one day per year that’s dedicated to dads has passed doesn’t mean that dads are any less important the other 364 days of the year.

Duncan Fisher at the Family Initiative in the UK recently put together a Global Fatherhood Charter that clearly and eloquently lays out the many ways fathers are important to children and families as well as what men, women, and society can and should do to support them. Fisher had help from more than 20 child development and fatherhood researchers from around the world, many of whom have been inspirations to me, including Michael Lamb, Ross Parke, Phil and Carolyn Cowan, Rob Palkovitz, and Kyle Pruett. Here’s the text of the Charter:

  1. The loving care of a father is a foundation for his child’s wellbeing and creates a life-long relationship.
  2. The loving care of father can be as powerful and important as that of a mother.

Click here to read the rest of this article.

Author: Armin Brott

Armin Brott is the proud father of three, a former U.S. Marine, a best-selling author, radio host, speaker, and one of the country’s leading experts on fatherhood. He writes frequently about fatherhood, families, and men’s health. Read more about Armin or visit his website, You can also connect via social media:, @mrdad,,,

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29 Aug

Health, Nutrition, Parenting

Body Image and Eating Disorders: Not for Girls Only

Dear Mr. Dad: I’m completely convinced that my son has an eating disorder. When he was little, he was always a little on the heavy side. At about 11—right when puberty hit—he suddenly started dieting. At first, I was proud of him for taking charge of his own weight. He looked really good and seemed happier with himself. But he kept right on dieting, to the point that he began to look skinny. To make matters worse, he’s talking about wanting to lose more weight. Thinking our son might be really sick, my husband and I took him to our pediatrician, who said he was fine and told him to put on some weight. I asked whether our son could have an eating disorder, but the pediatrician just smirked. What should we do?

A: Two things: First, get yourself a new pediatrician. Of the 30 million people in the U.S. who suffer from eating disorders, about a third are male. As are about half of all those who binge eat, purge, abuse laxatives, fast, and do other extreme things to lose weight. But far too many medical professionals, including your pediatrician, are too attached to the idea that girls and women are the only ones affected.

Second, find a mental health professional who has experience treating eating disorders. As with pediatricians, many therapists have trouble acknowledging that boys and men can be affected. Finding the right mental health person will be essential if your son needs extended outpatient or inpatient treatment. Most eating disorder programs and facilities don’t accept males. That, of course, makes it harder for boys like your son to get the treatment they so desperately need.

Click here to read the rest of this article.

Author: Armin Brott

Armin Brott is the proud father of three, a former U.S. Marine, a best-selling author, radio host, speaker, and one of the country’s leading experts on fatherhood. He writes frequently about fatherhood, families, and men’s health. Read more about Armin or visit his website, You can also connect via social media:, @mrdad,,,

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27 Aug


Are We Having Less Sex?

If you ask, most people think others have more sex than they
do. They would also say that if given the choice, they would have sex more
often than they actually do. And most think that the elderly have very little
sex. But are these perceptions really grounded in fact? Hardly.

The Science of Sex

The formal study of human sexual habits is a
relatively new science. Maybe it’s because sex is not a very easy subject to
investigate unlike, say, tobacco use. Sex customs change with time and this
tends to complicate things. In the sexually liberated 1960s, society went from
not having sex to having it a lot. The 1970s brought along women’s liberation
and the power of sexual choice. In the 1980s, as HIV surfaced, sex became less
randy and more sensible or carefully considered. The 1990s brought the World
Wide Web and the 2000s brought social media, both of which have changed the
public view of sex and pornography. It’s tough to study a constantly moving

Some of the best snapshot data on sex among Americans comes
from the Kinsey Institute’s 2010 national survey. Some of the
key takeaway points are:

  • Those partnered or married tend to
    have more sex/month than those who are single.
  • The highest rates of sex are
    among married folk between the ages of 25-49 with almost
    half having sex from a few times monthly to at least once weekly.
  • The frequency of sex decreases with age among
    men and women, but not as much as you might imagine: Two-thirds of
    Americans over age 70 have sex regularly.

More or Less Sex?

What we don’t know much about is whether there are any trends in
our sexual habits over time. Recently, a 15,000-person, 30-year survey
of British sexual practices was published that suggests that younger Brits are
having less sex than in the past. Over the past 30 years, among those aged
16-44 years, the sexual frequency per month dropped from 4 times to 3 times
among women and remained level at 3 times/month among men. They also found

  • The proportion of those reporting no sex in the
    past month increased over the 30-year study to about 29% of
    men and women.
  • The proportion of those reporting sex 10 times
    or more per month decreased from about 19% early on to 13% later
    on in the study.
  • Those 25 years old and older, and those married
    or partnered, had the steepest declines in sexual frequency.

So, what’s up with youth having less sex now than a
generation ago? The study’s authors offered up explanations based on the
concept that sex occurs during “downtime” in our lives. Essentially, today’s
youth have less downtime for sex than before – possibly because of more
“pressurized” lives, more exhaustion or more distractions from sex by digital
age behaviors such as social media or online working or shopping. Easy access
to pornography online may also play a role here but really hasn’t been studied.

Since sexual frequency is correlated not only with happiness
but also health, the study of sexual habits can inform us about birth rates as
well as overall population health.

This article first appeared on Dr. Turek’s blog.

Photo by Quin
 on Unsplash

Author: Dr. Paul Turek, Medical Contributor

Dr. Paul Turek is an internationally known thought leader in men’s reproductive and sexual health care and research. A fellowship trained, board-certified physician by the American Board of Urology (ABU), he has received numerous honors and awards for his work and is an active member in professional associations worldwide. His recent lectures, publications and book titles can be found in his curriculum vitae.

Read more by Dr. Paul Turek, Medical Contributor

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22 Aug

Health, Substance Abuse, Suicide

Men’s Health Starts at the Top: With the Head

Dear Mr. Dad: I’ve read several of your columns that have touched on the health of men and boys, but you haven’t spent much time talking about mental health. Is male mental health different than females’?

A: Very different. Within the broader men’s health crisis, which, as you mention, I’ve written a lot about, there’s one area where differences between male and female mortality and morbidity are especially stark: mental health, the most visible manifestation of which is suicide.

Across all ages and ethnicities, American men commit suicide at far higher rates than women. According to the most recent CDC data, between the ages of 15 and 64, roughly 3.5x more men than women commit suicide. For those over 74, the difference is a startling 9.3:1. Overall, for males, suicide is the 7th leading cause of death. For females, it’s number 14.

The alarming disparity in suicides is undoubtedly driven by equally alarming disparities in the underlying mental-health conditions that lead to suicide itself, including depression and anxiety, psychosis, and especially substance abuse.

Click here to read the rest of this article.

Author: Armin Brott

Armin Brott is the proud father of three, a former U.S. Marine, a best-selling author, radio host, speaker, and one of the country’s leading experts on fatherhood. He writes frequently about fatherhood, families, and men’s health. Read more about Armin or visit his website, You can also connect via social media:, @mrdad,,,

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20 Aug

You may do it all the time, but not for academic reasons.
Now they’re asking you to provide a semen
to see how it measures up. If you feel like you’re being
singled out, don’t. Truth is, there’s a long history of looking at semen under
a microscope. The Dutch lens maker van Leeuwenhoekfirst peered at sperm
through a microscope over 300 years ago; he called them “animalcules” or
“tiny animals.” So it may be comforting to know that you’re not the first to be
asked to do this.

Sperm Tarot Reading

Sure, it may seem odd, but checking your semen is an
important step in evaluating why you’re not able to conceive. For example,
there’s a 5% chance that no
 will be found – and that, my friend, changes things. So, here’s
a primer on how to collect a semen sample.

Loving Plastic Cups

Let’s begin with some biology. Realize that ejaculation is
a reflex, like a sneeze, and needs triggering to get the
sample you want. This can be difficult for many men to do “by appointment”
instead of recreationally. Face it, it’s entirely unromantic. In the words of
friend and author Greg Wolfe, it’s essentially “making love to a plastic cup.”

But there’s more. Not only must ejaculation happen on
schedule, but the semen must all be collected for examination. This is an
entirely new experience for many, if not all, men. It often leads to what I
call the “first-sample syndrome” in which half the semen is in the
cup and the other half ends up…somewhere else. Long story short, your semen
analysis may be for the first time you have to actually think about
what you’re doing when you ejaculate.

It’s also important to understand that the longer you
abstain from ejaculation before the “clinical” sample is offered, the older the
sperm are. Sure, you may have more seminal fluid and more sperm in the fluid,
but sperm motility or movement decreases dramatically. The ideal abstinence
period before providing a semen sample to the lab is 2-3 days. This is the
optimal for sperm count and motility. Oh, and keep the cup at body temperature
by putting it in your shirt pocket, and try to drop it off within an hour or
so of procurement, as sperm motility falls while in the cup.

Be aware that your semen quality is more likely to reflect
lifestyle choices over the past 2-3 months than the past 2-3 days.
For example, stopping alcohol, weed or tobacco use several days before your
semen analysis is unlikely to give you a better sample if you’ve been sousing
liberally for several months.

Finally, try not to use any lubrication when you collect the
sample. Notoriously toxic to sperm are saliva, hand lotions, soaps, hospital-based
lubricants (Surgilube, KY Jelly), water, soda, coffee or tea. Typically,
vegetable oils and mineral oils are safe. In this case, staying “high and dry”
is a good thing.

Bottom line is that there are lots of things that influence
semen quality. So put your best foot forward take great care of yourself and
follow these simple directions.

This article first appeared on Dr. Turek’s blog.

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15 Aug

Fatherhood, Parenting

The Rhythm of Language

Dear Mr. Dad: My 2 ½-year old is learning lots lot of new words, but has trouble singing even the simplest song. And although he sometimes rocks in time to music, he’s almost never on the beat. Is there a connection between language, music and rhythm, and is a problem with any of them a developmental red flag?

A: In a word, yes. During the second half of your child’s third year, his language skills make a sudden, often dramatic spurt forward. You’ll see this development in two distinct yet connected ways. First, you’ll notice that his imitation skills have become quite sharp: he can now repeat nearly any word or two-word phrase. He can also tell when he’s imitating something correctly and when he’s not.

Second, now that he’s got a good grasp of the sounds that make up his native language, he’ll begin using them as toys, amusing himself, and you, by making up his own “words.” Musically, a similar development is taking place. “Once they’ve acquired a simple vocabulary of tonal patterns and rhythms, [young children] can start creating their own songs,” says music educator Edwin Gordon.

Click to read the rest of this article.

Author: Armin Brott

Armin Brott is the proud father of three, a former U.S. Marine, a best-selling author, radio host, speaker, and one of the country’s leading experts on fatherhood. He writes frequently about fatherhood, families, and men’s health. Read more about Armin or visit his website, You can also connect via social media:, @mrdad,,,

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13 Aug

Relationships, STDs

The Skinny on STIs and Male Infertility

How many sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are there right
now in the U.S.? Believe it or not, 110,000,000! That’s double the number
of folks that get the flu each year. Talk about an epidemic! Not only that,
but 20,000,000 new STIs are diagnosed each year. Fully half of these
infections occur in 15- to 24-year-olds.

Unfortunately, most studies examining STIs and fertility
focus on females and not males. But there is some knowledge about how STIs
impact the fertility
 of men. Might be good to know which ones can impair male
fertility, don’tcha think?

What Goes Around

A dozen or more STIs are known. Their incidence varies
widely by geographic area. In the U.S., 8 common STIs and 2 rare, episodic ones
merit discussion. Among them, 4 are caused by bacteria and are curable, 1 is a
parasite (also curable) and 5 are viruses that aren’t curable but are
controllable. Here are the Top 10 pesky little bugs.

Top 10 STIs in the U.S.

  1. HPV (human papilloma virus or condyloma; 14
    million new cases annually). Alternatively called “venereal warts,” they are
    associated with cervical and penile cancers, but not male infertility. A
    preventative vaccine is available for teenagers.
  2. Chlamydia trachomatis (2.8 million cases).
    In women, chlamydia infections can block tubes and cause infertility. In men,
    blockages have not been demonstrated, but many studies show impaired sperm
     and DNA fragmentation either due to inflammation or
    anti-sperm antibodies.
  3. Trichomonas vaginalis (1.1 million cases)
    has no proven association with male fertility but this flagellated parasite has
    been linked to lower sperm motility. Treatable with antibiotics.
  4. Gonorrhea (820,000 cases) is a bacterial
    infection that causes nasty urethritis and potentially epididymitis which
    could lead to interruption or blockage
    of sperm
     flow during ejaculation and result in male sterility.
  5. Herpes simplex virus (HSV, 776,000 cases)
    causes painful genital pimples but has no well described association with male
    infertility. Its effect on developing babies in infected mothers is profound,
  6. Syphilis (55,400 cases). Early infections are
    marked by genital ulcers followed by neurological symptoms if untreated. Before
    the age of antibiotics, it was a common cause of dementia. There is no reported
    toxic effect of syphilis on sperm, but if untreated, infertility can result
    from inflammation, scarring and blockage of
    the epididymis and testis.
  7. HIV (41,400 cases) is associated with
    reduced semen quality and male infertility, but really only if the infection
    progresses to the point of weight loss and immunodeficiency.
  8. Ureaplasma urealyticum and Mycoplasma (common)
    are tiny bacteria that cling to sperm and may impair sperm motility and function.
    They are typically found in <1% of asymptomatic infertile men.
  9. Zika virus (rare) can be transmitted
    sexually during epidemics with devastating effects on fetal development but no
    clear effects on male fertility. However, Zika-infected male mice have been
    shown to be vulnerable to testicular infections and sterility.
  10. Ebola virus (very rare) is transmitted
    sexually and that can cause problems much worse than fertility, including

So, that’s the scoop on STIs and male infertility. Some are feared
and others simply frightening. Remember, you and your partners carry your
entire sexual history with you during every encounter. The best way to prevent
this cause of male infertility is to practice safe sex. Every time. Treatment
is good, but prevention is ideal.

This article first appeared on Dr. Turek’s blog.

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