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Circumcision

Call your pediatrician immediately if you notice any of these symptoms or if a Plastibell device was used during the circumcision and it does not fall off within 10 to 12 days.

You should gently clean the area every time you change his diaper and with water every day. If there is a bandage covering the circumcision area instead of a Plastibell, the bandage should be changed with every diaper change as well. Some doctors recommend applying a dab of petroleum jelly to the tip of the penis to prevent it from sticking to the diaper while itís healing. Read more about circumcision care.

The Controversy

Scientific studies about the necessity or harm of circumcision have provided conflicting results and the debate rages on about the procedure. Few experts recommend infant circumcision on a routine basis, but they also recognize there are benefits and advantages as well as disadvantages and risks. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) do not endorse the procedure for all newborn boys, and the AAP does not find sufficient evidence to medically recommend routine neonatal circumcision or argue against it.

Benefits

  • Decreased risk of urinary tract infections Ė A circumcised boy has a 1 in 1,000 chance of developing a UTI in the first year, while an uncircumcised boy has a 1 in 100 chance.

  • Decreased risk of developing cancer of the penis and a reduced risk of cervical cancer in female sex partners Ė Although cancer of the penis is exceedingly rare among both circumcised and uncircumcised men, circumcised men have a slightly lower risk.

  • Decreased risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) Ė Although proper protection against STDs (the use of condoms) is still absolutely necessary, there appears to be a reduced risk of contracting STDs, including HIV.

  • Prevents foreskin infections and phimosis Ė Phimosis is a condition in uncircumcised males that makes foreskin retraction impossible.

  • Easier genital hygiene Ė Although keeping an intact penis clean is simple and easy.

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