Info Sheet: Male Circumcision
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Info Sheet: Male Circumcision

Definition of the procedure/test
 
"Male circumcision (from Latin circumcidere, meaning "to cut around")[1] is the surgical removal of the foreskin (prepuce) from the human penis.[2][3][4] In a typical procedure, the foreskin is opened and then separated from the glans after inspection. The circumcision device (if used) is placed, and then the foreskin is removed. Topical or locally injected anesthesia may be used to reduce pain and physiologic stress.[5]"

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumcision
 
 
History
Why was it developed?  What was it supposed to treat?  
 
“The origination of male circumcision is not known with certainty. It has been variously proposed that it began as a religious sacrifice, as a rite of passage marking a boy's entrance into adulthood, as a form of sympathetic magic to ensure virility or fertility, as a means of enhancing sexual pleasure, as an aid to hygiene where regular bathing was impractical, as a means of marking those of higher social status, as a means of humiliating enemies and slaves by symbolic castration, as a means of differentiating a circumcising group from their non-circumcising neighbors, as a means of discouraging masturbation or other socially proscribed sexual behaviors, as a means of removing "excess" pleasure, as a means of increasing a man's attractiveness to women, as a demonstration of one's ability to endure pain, or as a male counterpart to menstruation or the breaking of the hymen, or to copy the rare natural occurrence of a missing foreskin of an important leader, and as a display of disgust of the smegma produced by the foreskin. It has been suggested that the custom of circumcision gave advantages to tribes that practiced it and thus led to its spread.[1][2][3] Darby describes these theories as "conflicting", and states that "the only point of agreement among proponents of the various theories is that promoting good health had nothing to do with it.”

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_male_circumcision
 

 
Pros & Cons
 
PROS
As per the medical community:
 
  • Easier hygiene. Circumcision makes it simpler to wash the penis. Washing beneath the foreskin of an uncircumcised penis is generally easy, however.
 
  • Decreased risk of urinary tract infections. The overall risk of urinary tract infections in males is low, but these infections are more common in uncircumcised males. Severe infections early in life can lead to kidney problems later on.
 
  • Decreased risk of sexually transmitted infections. Circumcised men might have a lower risk of certain sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. Still, safe sexual practices remain essential.
 
  • Prevention of penile problems. Occasionally, the foreskin on an uncircumcised penis can be difficult or impossible to retract (phimosis). This can lead to inflammation of the foreskin or head of the penis.
 
  • Decreased risk of penile cancer. Although cancer of the penis is rare, it's less common in circumcised men. In addition, cervical cancer is less common in the female sexual partners of circumcised men.
 
 
“However, all of these problems are uncommon (for example, only about 1% of all boys will have a UTI), so lowering the risk of an uncommon problem isn't a huge benefit. Additionally, an uncircumcised penis is easy to care for and keep clean, so improved hygiene is not actually a reason for routine circumcisions, either.” (from webmd.com)

Sources: 
 
CONS

  • The foreskin might be cut too short or too long
  • The foreskin might fail to heal properly
  • The remaining foreskin might reattach to the end of the penis, requiring minor surgical repair
  • Pain
  • Risk of bleeding and infection at the site of the circumcision
  • Irritation of the glans
  • Increased risk of meatitis (inflammation of the opening of the penis)
  • Risk of injury to the penis
  • Studies show that circumcision is significantly painful and traumatic, resulting in large increases in heart rate, blood pressure and stress hormone levels.
  • Some infants don't cry because they go into shock.
  • Penile anesthetic injections, if used, don't completely eliminate pain. 
  • The trauma can cause behavioral and neurological changes and disrupt mother-child bonding and feeding.
  • It could interfere with the establishment of breastfeeding if the child is in too much pain to want to nurse.


Sources: 


 
 
Additional Links
To explore for more information
 
http://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/pages/Newborn-Male-Circumcision.aspx
 
http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/2007/9789241596169_eng.pdf
 
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/05/us/05circumcision.html?_r=0
 
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/moral-landscapes/201109/myths-about-circumcision-you-likely-believe
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ceht-3xu84I
 
http://www.drmomma.org/2009/09/functions-of-foreskin-purposes-of.html
 
http://www.thewholenetwork.org
 
Pictures: 
http://www.drmomma.org/2011/08/intact-or-circumcised-significant.html

Bradley Method® natural childbirth classes offered in Arizona: Chandler, Tempe, Ahwatukee, Gilbert, Mesa, Scottsdale, PaysonDisclaimer: 
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.  Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided.  This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.

 



4 Comments to Info Sheet: Male Circumcision:

Comments RSS
Ron Low on Wednesday, November 27, 2013 10:46 PM
UTI are 8 times as common in girls as in any group of boys. In places where intactness is the norm (and parents know not to fiddle with the foreskin) the UTI "benefit" is not seen.
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Ron Low on Wednesday, November 27, 2013 10:48 PM
Circumcision alters sex dramatically. Hundreds of thousands of men are enduring a multi-year process of non-surgical foreskin restoration to undo some of the sexual damage.
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vistshop on Thursday, June 05, 2014 7:22 AM
Greetings! I've been following your site for some time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Austin Tx! Just wanted to say keep up the excellent job!
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Great Alchemy on Wednesday, January 27, 2016 1:20 PM
Great article. That looks painful!!!
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