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Everything You Should Know About Circumcision

The popularity of circumcision — removal of the foreskin at the end of the penis — is declining, from 80% of male babies in the 1980s to about 55% today. But it remains a common practice here in the United States. 

Your decision to have your baby circumcised may be religiously, socially, or culturally driven.

At Urology Associates Medical Group in Burbank, California, our team of medical specialists offers circumcision for male babies and even older patients. We take time to answer your questions and address any concerns so you can make an informed decision.

What is a circumcision? 

Boys are born with skin that covers the end of their penis. This skin is called the foreskin. Circumcision is a surgical procedure during which we remove the foreskin, leaving the tip of the penis exposed. 

Most males who get circumcised in the United States have the procedure when they are infants, but older boys and men may opt for circumcision, too. 

Are there benefits associated with circumcision?

There are health reasons to consider a circumcision. Removing the foreskin reduces the risk of bacteria getting trapped, lowering the risk of infections. 

Other benefits of circumcision include:

While the American Academy of Pediatrics notes that the benefits of circumcision outweigh the risks, they do not issue a blanket recommendation, instead leaving the decision up to the parents. 

Are there any risks from circumcision?

Circumcision is a surgical procedure, and like all surgical procedures, it comes with some risks, though they are rare. Some potential risks associated with circumcision include:

In rare cases, patients may also experience scarring and damage to the urethra. Some people worry circumcision leads to diminished sexual pleasure, but there’s no evidence to support this claim. 

What else do I need to know about circumcision?

While there are medical benefits and risks with circumcision, another consideration is the role it plays in you or your son’s appearance

Decades ago, most boys were circumcised, so parents had concerns about their child being teased or ridiculed if they looked different from their peers. If you’re an uncircumcised man, you may have experienced this firsthand. 

Since fewer parents are opting for circumcision, this concern is less relevant in today’s world. But religious reasons aside, some parents still prefer their sons’ genitals to look similar to the other men in the immediate family. 

A concern about appearance is legitimate and may influence your decision. Discuss this and any other concerns with our Urology Associates Medical Group team.

Contact us to schedule an appointment or to learn more about circumcision for you or your son.

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