Topic:So, Why Circumcision? Any Benefits, Risks
For many, circumcision is a merely a religious or cultural ritual/rite of passage. This is mainly applicable to many Jewish and Islamic families, as well as certain tribes in Africa and Australia. This practice can also be a tradition/practice.
From a medical point of view, circumcision can also be a matter of family personal hygiene or preventive health care. Sometimes there’s a medical need for circumcision, such as when the foreskin of the penis is too tight to be pulled back (retracted) over the glans (the tip of the penis).
However, in some cases, particularly in certain parts of Africa, circumcision is recommended for older boys or men to reduce the risk of certain sexually transmitted infections.
In, America, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says the benefits of circumcision surpass the risks. However, it must be clearly emphasized that, the AAP doesn’t recommend routine circumcision for all male newborns. This decision is strictly left for the parents to make. AAP, supports use of anesthetics for infants who have the procedure.
In Summary Circumcision, might/ could have various health benefits, including:
1. Easier hygiene, simply put, circumcision makes it easy to wash the penis. Please note, conversely, washing under the foreskin of an uncircumcised penis is generally easy, however.
2. It decreases the risk of urinary tract infections. Generally, the overall risk of urinary tract infections in males is low, but these infections are more common in uncircumcised males. Severe UTIs early in life can lead to kidney problems later on.
3. It decreases the risk of sexually transmitted infections. Circumcised men might have a lower risk of certain sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. Having said that, it is still highly recommended to practice safe sex.
4. Prevention of penile problems. Sometimes, the foreskin on an uncircumcised penis can be difficult or impossible to retract (leading to a condition called phimosis). This can lead to inflammation of the foreskin or head of the penis.
5. Circumcision can also decrease the risk of penile cancer. Although cancer of the penis is rare, it’s less common in circumcised men. Also, notably, cervical cancer is less common in the female sexual partners of circumcised men.
• Please, note, circumcision might not be an option if certain blood-clotting disorders are present.
• In addition, circumcision might not be appropriate for premature babies who still require medical care in the hospital nursery. (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit)
• Circumcision doesn’t affect fertility,
• It also does not enhance or reduce sexual pleasure for men or their partners.
Dr. Chudi Godsons
References & Photo Credit
• Mayo Clinic