To Cut, Or Not To Cut

As the weeks of pregnancy begin to wind down, there remain some things to be decided. Not the names, we have those picked out. The nursery has a theme and the car seat has been installed. But one big thing topping our list of things to decide now is whether to circumcise. That is, if we have a boy.

I honestly have no idea where we are going to land on the issue. I know there is no real medical reason to do it, and only about 20% of the men of the world are circumcised, but we do live in that 20% population. On the one hand, I feel like we tend to be more “natural” parents are therefore why mess with something unless it is a problem? Why would we choose to put our baby through a painful and unnecessary procedure? Did you know circumcision is the only surgery in America routinely performed without anesthesia? On the other hand though, I feel like it is a “now or never” type situation. If there does end up being one of those small percentage problems (such as frequent infections and penile cancer) then somewhere down the road it would need to be done. OR he might feel embarrassed about it and choose to have it done later. Both cases make me cringe to think about. And, the procedure becomes more complicated as the child/boy/man ages.

In 1999, the American Academy of Pediatrcis formed a task force on circumcision that decided the procedure shouldn’t be routinely recommended. The task force based this policy on 40 years of studies of both circumcised and uncircumcised boys, and it concluded the following:

  • Problems with the penis, such as irritation, can occur with or without circumcision.
  • With proper care, there is no difference in hygiene.
  • There may or may not be differences in sexual sensation in adult men.
  • There is an increased risk for a UTI in uncircumcised males, especially babies under 1 year. However, the risk for a UTI is still less than 1 percent.
  • Newborn circumcision provides some protection from penile cancer, which only occurs in the foreskin. However, the risk of this cancer is very low in developed countries such as the United States.

If you want to read up a little on the issue click here for a helpful article.

So PLEASE help me out and share your opinions! If you have a son or sons, did you choose to circumcise? Why or why not? Even if you don’t have sons, please share your thoughts on the subject! Women- how would you feel dating or marrying an uncircumcised man? Men- would you be thankful to your parents for taking care of it before you could remember, or feel like something was taken from you without your consent? Would you want a son to have an opportunity to have something you never did, or would you want him to look like you in the shower? All thoughts and opinions are welcomed!