1. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts


    I am interested to know what experiences new moms (and dads) have had regarding the DECISION to circumcise.  Did your pediatrician have opinions either way? Did your family chime in?  Did you get pressure while in the hospital?  The US has somewhat recently begun to shift away from circumcision and Europe/Canada been this way for a while so I'm very curious to know what people have been hearing/experiencing.
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from Txgrl82. Show Txgrl82's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I don't have any personal experience with it other than if we are blessed with a son the next time around that I really, really don't want to do it.

    DH is pretty much wants our future son circumcised so that there will be no questions as to why "Daddy's looks different"...I don't know if I agree that this really matters in the end, though, as I can't remember my brother having many trips to the bathroom with my father!

    I know that in my nuclear family it is not customary to circumcise (we are of European decent, first generation in USA) but I believe most of my male cousins are. My sister hasn't circumcised either of her sons.

    So, if we ever do have a son, I will vote "no"...hopefully I will be able to persuade DH at that time. If someone does it for religious reasons I can understand that. Otherwise I see no purpose, but again that's my opinion!
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from quadgirl1234. Show quadgirl1234's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    In my religion we would not have it any other way.   All baby boys are circumcised.  I only have a DD but if I was to have a son it would have been done.  I have heard horror stories from mothers who did not have it done at birth and now there children are needing to get it done in there early teens. 
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from Txgrl82. Show Txgrl82's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Quad, do you know some of the medical reasons to have it done? I know my FIL had to have it done later in life for medical reasons, but I'm not 100% sure why.
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Quadgirl, assuming that this is due to Judaism, I read somewhere that Reform Jews no longer practice this.  Can you comment?
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from Notanewbie. Show Notanewbie's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    One reason that there are a lot of horror stories about late life circumcisions is due to the fact that people don't know what to do with an intact pen1s.  If the foresk1n is forcibly retracted before it naturally retracts, it can set boys up for a lifetime of trouble and often results in later life circs.  These stories are actually becoming less common now that circumcision rates are declining.  More health professionals and parents are now aware of the fact that no special care or cleaning is required. In fact, I've recently read a lot more horror stories about botched circumcisions and would prefer to avoid elective surgery that could have such horrible lifelong ramifications.

    Here is some basic info on caring for intact boys:

    "The pen1s is essentially made up of a shaft with a bulb at the end of it called the glans. The glans is covered by a layer of tissue called the foresk1n or prepuce. The part of the foresk1n that faces the outside is made of the skin similar to that of the rest of the body. The inner part of the foresk1n is made of soft mucous tissue with the similar consistency to that of the cheeks inside the mouth. When the pen1s is first developing, the glans and this inner layer of foresk1n are fused. As the cells of the inner layer of the foresk1n are shed, the foresk1n becomes more mobile. While the foresk1n may retract somewhat during erections which normally occur during infancy, it often takes years for this cell shedding to progress to the point that the foresk1n will easily retract. And, in fact, forcing the foresk1n to retract can cause bleeding which may lead to more problematic attachments called adhesions.

    Where do these shedding cells go? They collect into little white beads which work themselves out from under the foresk1n. Note that I say this occurs on its own. In other words, it does not require special cleaning to get rid of these beads called smegma. In fact, any probing or vigorous cleaning could actually cause damage to the relatively fragile inner layer of the foresk1n leading to adhesion formation. Eventually, the foresk1n will completely retract. Most boys will have a foresk1n which fully retracts by about age five. However, everyone is different, and it may not be until he is a teenager before the foresk1n completely retracts."

  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from capecod18. Show capecod18's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    We had our DS circumcised at the hospital.  I can tell you that it is a super quick procedure.  They observe the boy for about 45 minutes after and rarely are there any side effects.  I think the only thing the doctor mentioned is that the baby tends to be a little more sleepy during the day.  There was no pressure at the hospital.  i believe we had to sign a consent form but it was over very quick.  It didn't seem to bother my DS and he was actually very alert after the procedure.  I didn't really think that much about it but my husband and I were always in agreement that we would have him circumcised.
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from bean78. Show bean78's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    we did it for my son when he was born almost 4 years ago...i didnt really want to do it but my husband was strongly for it. Since he was the male i let him take the lead on it. It was very quick and relatively easy to deal with after wards. DS was a bit out of it because of the tylenol and glycerine they gave him to numb the pain. Ours is a cautionary tale though: In MA anyway, your OB will perform the circ. In other states it is another story. My own OB did it on the morning that I was discharged and we had nothing but problems within the first year....they are quite "conservative" now in how they perform the circ and the tools that they use prevent them from taking off too much but in many cases they don't take enough. From the getgo, my son never LOOKED circumsized and the normal smegna that forms in an uncircumsized person continued to form awful adhesions that for a while we could get in there and clean and ease apart but once DS was a bit older he fought us on cleaning him. We ended up having to do it again at 18 months when he was all too aware of what was going on. AND the kicker is that the ped's urologist that did it does TWO a day, FIVE days a week. SO this is VERY commom. A good friend had a boy a year ago and expressed concern in how her sons looked afterwards and I then told her what happened to us. Her son ended up with a re-circ also.

    Just food for thought.
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from Kiwiguy. Show Kiwiguy's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Our little guy has not had the snip. Mummy was not worried if he had it or not, so she left it to me to decide and I see no need for it.

    The land of the Kiwi is much like Europe and to my knowledge the snip is not common there. In fact, I don't know any of my guy friends back home who are snipped. In the interests of full disclosure, I must admit that I do not recall an evening at the pub with the boys saying, "so, which of you are circumcised?" But I digress.

    I think it is done in the US based largely on religious grounds, and this seems to have seeped into the broader culture. Much like people in the US freaking out about nudity, or topless women at the beach, while people in other countries think nothing of it. I must admit, I have spent some time in the Middle East and they are not enthralled by that concept either, but I digress once more!

    Back on topic. I am not circumcised and I have had no troubles. In fact, I had not even realized this might be an issue for some people until I arrived in the US. I have heard the various horror stories about teenaged boys and older men, but honestly, I had heard none of these before I moved to the US, and even since then, I have heard none of these stories from the motherland. I think common sense prevails and boys need to learn to wash thoroughly in that area as they grow up - as should circumcised boys and girls. I think Notanewbie had some great info in her post above.

    Finally, I have never really bought the whole "but the other boys will laugh/make fun of/tease, etc, my son if they are all circumcised and he is not" argument. Frankly, kids will get made fun of for many things - their size (fat, skinny, tall, short), their hair color (break out the Ginga jokes), freckles, their funny foreign accent, their weird parents (except for all of our children, of course!!), and unfortunately even their skin color. We teach kids that everyone is different and that is a good thing. I don't know of any parents that have had procedures done to turn their redhead kids into blondes (although nothing would surprise me these days), so why justify a circumcision on those grounds? If you have a religious reason, or some other personal reason, then go for it, but don't be fooled into believing it is a medical or social necessity.

    By the way - we have had no pressure from family,hospital or our Pediatrician.
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from quadgirl1234. Show quadgirl1234's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Yes, I am Jewish.  I have not heard that reform Jews do not practice this any longer. I will see if I can read up about it.  That is news to me.  Thansk for the info.

    I think the reason the boys had it done later in life was because it was getting infected.  Maybe it was not taken care of properly I am not sure.  My father had it done later in life to and I know he would sway us in the direction to circumcise beyond the religous reasons.
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from mbg109. Show mbg109's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    My understanding is that there was a surge of circumcisions in the US following Vietnam because, yes, apparently when you are spending months in the jungle, it's difficult to keep everything clean. Some returning veterans had this procedure done later in life-- very painful (but then imagine how painful it is for an infant!)-- and subsequently had their sons snipped. As a matter of practical terms now, there is no increased risk of infection-- you just have to keep it clean. I think it's dangerous to make this important decision simply because one wants their kid to resemble their father (to your point, Txgrl) or because of some vague stories of infection of some friend of a friend. I am clearly biased: I would never do this. My husband is also from Europe, and it is not the practice there. I think it would be very interesting to see what would happen here in the US if insurance stopped covering this procedure because, well, there is absolutely no medical reason for it. My guess is you would see a precipitous drop in elective surgery for infants. Of course, this, like all child care decisions, is a very personal one, and oftentimes also a religious consideration. Clearly, even within nuclear families, people make different decisions: my nephew was snipped in the hospital shortly after birth. I wish everyone luck in considering the options! Have a great day!
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from Notanewbie. Show Notanewbie's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I realized that I never answered the OP's specific questions.  For the record we did NOT circumcise.

    Did your pediatrician have opinions either way? No, but we had never met him before we had our first pedi appt after the birth.

    Did your family chime in?  No, but we didn't really seek out opinions in advance.  While I was pregnant a friend asked us what we planned to do (we knew we were having a boy) and we said that we planned to keep him intact even though my husband is circ'ed.  She mentioned that they had made the same decision when their two boys were born 25 years ago and that was pretty much the extent of the input or advice we received.

    Did you get pressure while in the hospital? I barely remember it even being brought up at the hospital.  I think it was a question on the intake form and we included a note about no circ on our birth plan.  I also think the nurse asked the question at one point during our stay to confirm our wishes and that was the end of it.

    I have made it a point to let caregivers and babysitters know that he is uncirc'ed and that they basically don't need to do anything special when diapering...just leave it alone. I don't have a very large family, but I know that all of the men are snipped so this was a new thing for my relatives.
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    There is a big difference in rates of penile cancer - higher by far if uncircumcised.
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Would you please cite your sources on that on wags?
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I have a 9.5 year old boy and he was circumcised the day before I was discharged.  He was very alert after the procedure and my OB even asked us if we wanted to go in and watch (we declined).  The decision was based mostly that his father was as was the rest of the males in both of our immediate families. 
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from Notanewbie. Show Notanewbie's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Re:Wags comment

    From The American Cancer Society

    "In the past, circumcision has been suggested as a way to prevent penile cancer. This was based on studies that reported much lower penile cancer rates among circumcised men than among uncircumcised men. But most researchers now believe those studies were flawed because they failed to consider other risk factors, such as smoking, personal hygiene, and the number of sexual partners.

    Most public health researchers believe that the risk of penile cancer is low among uncircumcised men without known risk factors living in the United States. Most experts agree that circumcision should not be recommended solely as a way to prevent penile cancer."
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from Kiwiguy. Show Kiwiguy's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Thanks Notanewbie. I can rest easy again for the rest of the day now. I think ....
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from kaydo. Show kaydo's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    We circumcised our son, but I have to admit we didn't spend a LOT of time thinking about it.  What we read said that there were less reasons to do it than previously believed, but still some good evidence for it being slightly more hygenic (my fear was a teenaged boy who couldn't be bothered to clean it properly, I'd have no control over that, and then we'd have problems).

    I remember when we were interviewing pediatricians, I asked one of them if we should be there for the procedure (thinking maybe it would be good for DS if I were there to comfort him, etc).  The pediatrician gave me a look of horror and said, "Good god, why would you want to do that?!"

    One issue we did have, though... when he was about 6 weeks old, the foresk1n reattached, I had to take him into the pediatrician, and they broke the skin apart with some vaseline and q-tip.  It was HORRIBLE for about 2 minutes (he screamed bloody murder, and I had to fight back tears myself) but then it was fine.  I don't know if having been through that experience, I'd change my mind about having a future DS snipped, but it was pretty awful.
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Thanks Notanewbie.  From what I had read on the subject, most of the older bogus studies correlating an increased risk of cancer with non-circumcision had failed to take into account lifestyle choices and smoking!
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from Daisy75. Show Daisy75's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I came across another (admittedly biased) website that pointed out that penile cancer is a disease of old men and most studies have not corrected the statistics to account for age.  When the statistics are corrected, the rates are very similar.  They also point out that the rate of penile cancer is less than breast cancer in men--basically, it's extremely rare to begin with.

    FWIW, here is the website:

    I can't cite it, but I remember reading somewhere that circumsizing to prevent cancer is like amputating a fingertip to prevent a hangnail.  That's probably a little extreme, but it goes to show how strongly people can feel about this issue.

    Our son is intact.  DH is not.  I was clear that I preferred to keep him intact and got no argument from DH.  We discussed it a little bit--if there were any benefits to doing it; if there were any risks for not doing it.  And we were in agreement that it wasn't medically necessary and the fact that DH's parents had made a decision to have it done to DH 34 years ago shouldn't have anything to do with what we decide to do with our son.

    Our pedi didn't have anything to say about it.  The one we had in the hospital neither offered nor gave any counsel about it and we didn't ask.  Our regular pedi we only met after we'd come home, and other than answering my questions about cleaning etc., he didn't question our decision.

    My mother was a little freaked out at first.  We hadn't discussed it with her ahead of time, and towards the end of my hospital stay she asked WHEN we were having it done and I told her we weren't.  She came up with all the "but what about the locker room and other boys..." arguments and I explained to her that we didn't think it was a necessary medical procedure and told her that it's becoming less-common so he WON'T be the only one.  She ended up doing some reading about it and came back and told us she was glad we didn't do it.  And that was that.

    We had no pressure in the hospital.  A couple of nurses asked, and I think my OB asked, and, interestingly, when we said "no" their response was always "good."  I thought that was a little weird and wondered if they're just instructed to say that regardless of the parents' response.  Otherwise, it seems strange that medical professionals would make that kind of comment.

    I do feel it's up to each family to decide for themselves, but I would hope it's something they discuss ahead of time and don't just do it b/c they think they're supposed to.
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I was interested because so many medical people in the hospital kept asking us.  I was surprised that nearly every nurse and doctor kept asking (non judgemental all the while) given the current environment of being more progressive on the matter.  I wondered if other people had the same experience.
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from hot-tomato. Show hot-tomato's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    Hi Sarah -- I think it's great that you, as the mom, are taking an active interest in this issue.

    We decided not to circ. I felt very strongly about that, and when DH looked into the pros and cons, he also came to feel very strongly against it. We had several friends who had boys who also decided not to circ., so we felt very supported in this choice.

    We did make this a question when we interviewed pediatricians, just to gauge whether they would respect our decision. The hospital I think just asked for their information and didn't comment one way or the other.

    As for parents, my mom was a little weird, but seems to have gotten over it. We didn't really ask for input from the grandparents, but we did have to talk it over with all of them, who provide some level of childcare so needed to know how to care for intact.
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from KAM2007. Show KAM2007's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    We felt no pressure from the hospital to cir or not to. Our Pedi had no say in the matter. Our families did make comments on our decision. On day two of DS's life my father witnessed a diaper change and awkwardly asked what our plans were. DH had discussed the plans with his parents and they were cool with how we planned on doing it.

    So, our decision was to circ. DH's culture, they circ when a boy is typically 4-6 years old, or even older. we have a friend who wasn't circ until he was 15. This is based on their religion.

    I would have preferred to keep DS intact, BUT knew the push back I would get from the religious perspective. So I put my foot down that IF we circ'd then it would be at birth, no ifs ands or buts. DH was relieved to do it at birth. Surprisingly so were my inlaws.

    DS' forsk1n did reattach a little bit, but we left it alone. our Pedi noticed it and said let it be, it will unattach itself in time. just clean around the head gently and he'll be all set. honestly I'm not sure where things stand since I don't poke or prode it.

    We did get one comment in the hospital on our decision from a nurse, her comment: "Oh, your OB does a GREAT job on circs, it looks really good afterwards." I found that to be and odd comment. I did not pursue it at further since she was already like a character on Saturday Night Live.

  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from whatawagSBNy. Show whatawagSBNy's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    I actually looked it up - before we had our son circumcised in March.  I will look for the references again.Much of what was convincing was in pamphlets  from doctors recommending it for our son. (as below)

        The very old studies giving all sorts of questionable reasons, including   poor hygeine of uncircumcised males seemed bogus,  since many of the older men who had penile cancer 1980's to 2000  were born at a time before more than half of America had running hot water in their homes, when bathing and showering were often a weekly thing - and the biggest groups of the uncircumcised in America were immigrants, in city tenements, and poor people.

        So the data seemed screwy.  All kinds of risk factors differed.

        But time working with men with STD's did convince me that things like initial lesions for warts and syphillis, and sometimes gono, are often not observed by uncircumcised men (they do not necessarily hurt) and more of these men went into later stages of the diseases, since the initial sores go away after a very short time.   But they are contagious.

        And the more convincing data - as people following vaccination for human Papilloma virus to prevent cervical cancer may have noted, unobserved such HPV warts infections do lead to documented cancer in women.

        So the logic of more recent studies which lay the blame for increased risk of penile cancer  to possible untreated  or incurable STD's, and the greater risk to partner women who might not take precautions if the man  did not see the brief appearance of lesions,  and did not know he had HPV,  is fairly convincing.

        I also do not think that HIV is going away any time soon.

         And working with people with HIV, and all the literature they blast at you (in the Army)  it is very clear, someone with an open lesion is far more likely to acquire AIDS, or any other STD or hepatitis, through that lesion.  Often on a single encounter.

        A lesion which is  far more likely to be seen on a circumcised male.   They often look like a very thin line old scar, or a small stretch mark ( like women get, breasts or belly) that can be 1/4 inch to 3/4 inch long.

       So being more easily in view, uncovered, it is more easily seen.  Because in a couple of weeks when it disappears, the disease is still there internally, and goes to a more advanced stage.

        So I can understand most references that first pop up on the web seeming not too convincing either way.
       But read up on women and cervical cancer from HPV, and ask yourself, do you think this disease cancer from this virus, bypases males?   And are we doing our daughters too any favors, having a hood over an organ they might want to casually check out now and again, when honey says - I have a clean bill of health...

        Contagion and detection of STD's is everyone's issue, as is cancer.

       Our child had to have a last skin graft surgery from a burn, therefore anaesthetic, and post surgical meds anyway.

        So we decided, do it, after the Montreal doctor's rec was:   coming to the area we live in, with far more STD risk than where our kids came from, the long term cancer risk via HPV that is worth vaccinating girls for , might be worth the minor surgery that is a circumcision.

        I do not think the boy himself has realized anything is different.  Age 3.

       Hubby is circ., as only half the boys in his family are.  Some were born in Italy, and the other 2 boys older than DH, mother did not speak enough English then to know what to consent to.
         But DH and younger brothers were all done, after Mom learned  better English, and problems she had with 2 older brothers with tight foreskins and infections, convinced her personally.
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from luckinlife. Show luckinlife's posts

    Re: Circumcision?

    As a pediatrician I do not specifically advocate one or the other.
    However, I will say that there is a decreased risk of HIV transmission, penile cancer and a clear decrease risk for UTIs in babies after circ.

    This is what the studies have shown but whether or not one decides to circ or not is totally a personal decision.