Circumcision


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Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:31 am

If you had a baby boy today would you circumcise him?

I had a baby boy 3 months ago and we did not. It wasn't something I had thought much about, but daddy didn't want it done. After doing some research, I am SO glad we didn't!!!

- It hurts! A lot! My baby went through a lot in his first few days of life, and I am SO GLAD we didn't add anything else on top of that.

- Not everyone else is doing it anymore. One study estimates that circumcision rates in the US have fallen from 56% in 2006 to 32% in 2009. This is in large part because most insurance no longer covers it.

- It has risks. Most commonly things like adhesions or doctors screwing it up which can require additional procedures. But babies have also died from circumcision in the US, it is very easy for a newborn baby to bleed out. They don't have much blood to begin with, and because it's in the diaper, they could lose a lot of blood without the parents realizing it. As little as losing one ounce of blood can cause the baby to hemorrhage and 2.3 ounces can kill them.

- It has little medical benefit. Things that it supposedly reduces the risk of like UTIs and penile cancer are pretty rare to begin with. A lot of the research is dubious anyway because in studies the foreskins of the uncircumcised boys were prematurely retracted and otherwise not properly cared for. They've since found that if you just leave well enough alone it's usually fine!

- The benefits of reduced STD risk are very dubious at best. The best way to not get STDs is to not sleep around and to use condoms. Many of the benefits found in the studies in Africa were because they were circumcising adults who were then too sore to have as much sex as normal!

- Baby doesn't have to look like daddy. What a lame reason to perform a medically unnecessary procedure!

What would you do? Have you ever seen a video or seen the procedure being done in real life?
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Daisy » Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:35 am

We had two boys and chose not to. The pro list outlined by the doctors did not seem to warrant it, in our opinion.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Rye Catcher » Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:43 am

Its a personal choice, like birth control, not something the government should control.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Marlow » Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:46 am

polevaultpower wrote: - The benefits of reduced STD risk are very dubious at best. The best way to not get STDs is to not sleep around and to use condoms.

Really? Everything I've read (and just rechecked) says that there is a 60% decrease in HIV (and other STDs) transmission in circumcised males compared to uncircumcised males.

While I agree with the 'not sleeping around' dictum, that is also the stance of the Abstinence movement, which is not working out so well. Why would you NOT want to circumcise, if it's going to help protect your son, when he's not protecting himself? I never wore a helmet when I was a kid riding my bike, but I made my kids and grandkids. Just saying.

But, it's entirely your call, Becca. Do what ya gotta do! :D
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Re: Circumcision

Postby TrakFan » Sat Jul 02, 2011 10:50 am

I agree that it's definitely the parents call.

Some may see putting holes in a baby girl's ears solely for her to look cuter, or so that people don't mistake her as a boy when she's covered up as silly. So, to each his/her own...
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Re: Circumcision

Postby gh » Sat Jul 02, 2011 11:30 am

This is a good topic, and one which, by the way, I would have had no problem with on the Not Track forum before now. I mean if Jews and Muslims are actually in agreement on something, how can religion enter into it?!

This may well be a generational thing, but after hearing my wife and other women of the Baby Boomer generation discuss the subject of their experience with Anthony Weiner's favorite part, and across the board they have said their reaction to having a guy flop out an unsnipped one was a unanimous "ewww!"
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Re: Circumcision

Postby kuha » Sat Jul 02, 2011 11:38 am

I realized that this is "our" version of "genital mutilation." It's something I honestly hadn't given much thought to, but it is an interesting issue.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Pego » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:04 pm

gh wrote: I mean if Jews and Muslims are actually in agreement on something, how can religion enter into it?!


Wanna bet 8-) :wink: ?
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:25 pm

Rye Catcher wrote:Its a personal choice, like birth control, not something the government should control.


Yeah totally. I'm not in favor of the government banning people from doing it, I just think that people should make an informed decision. I think for a long time people (in America) just did it because it was the thing to do.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:33 pm

gh wrote:This is a good topic, and one which, by the way, I would have had no problem with on the Not Track forum before now.


I dunno gh, this topic gets really heated on parenting message boards :twisted:
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Re: Circumcision

Postby TrakFan » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:35 pm

polevaultpower wrote:I just think that people should make an informed decision. I think for a long time people (in America) just did it because it was the thing to do.


I was shocked by the informed decisions made by some parents after listening to Dr. Andrew "vaccines cause Autism" Wakefield
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Re: Circumcision

Postby jeremyp » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:47 pm

polevaultpower wrote:
Rye Catcher wrote:Its a personal choice, like birth control, not something the government should control.


Yeah totally. I'm not in favor of the government banning people from doing it, I just think that people should make an informed decision. I think for a long time people (in America) just did it because it was the thing to do.


The question is: what is an informed decision? Many people have walked away from vaccination "loads" thanks to the myth that it might cause autism. In Tucson recently when measles showed up in a hospital it was discovered 30% of the Tucson health employess had not been vacinated, 4,500 had to be sent home!

Studies do show that in Africa HIV rates dropped 55-65% for circumcised males. To me the informed decision would be: if you live in a country with a high HIV transmission rate have your boys circumcised. If you don't live in such a country how the hell are you going to predict whether your son will get into high risk sexual behavior? Circumcise!

As we used to say in England: "Roundheads rule over Cavaliers."
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 1:10 pm

Marlow wrote:
polevaultpower wrote: - The benefits of reduced STD risk are very dubious at best. The best way to not get STDs is to not sleep around and to use condoms.

Really? Everything I've read (and just rechecked) says that there is a 60% decrease in HIV (and other STDs) transmission in circumcised males compared to uncircumcised males.

While I agree with the 'not sleeping around' dictum, that is also the stance of the Abstinence movement, which is not working out so well. Why would you NOT want to circumcise, if it's going to help protect your son, when he's not protecting himself? I never wore a helmet when I was a kid riding my bike, but I made my kids and grandkids. Just saying.

But, it's entirely your call, Becca. Do what ya gotta do! :D



I think advocating condom use to prevent STDs would be about a million times more effective than circumcision. The 60% number comes from a single study of Africans who were circumcised as adults. There's no evidence that circumcising an American newborn will make them less likely to catch an STD later.

Here are a few articles on the topic, you can certainly find articles proving either point!
http://www.cirp.org/library/disease/HIV/vanhowe2005a/
http://www.circumstitions.com/STDs.html

Even if I believed it would protect against STDs, I would not want to circumcise because of the risks involved. My son is welcome to choose to get circumcised when he gets older and can make an informed decision for himself! If it does protect against STDs than it would provide that protection whether he got it done as a newborn or an adolescent who was not yet sexually active.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby BisonHurdler » Sat Jul 02, 2011 1:29 pm

The American Urological Association doesn't officially recommend for or against circumcision, as there is a lack of compelling evidence to sway their opinion in either direction. That said, it is commonly taught (although I haven't looked into the literature myself yet) that male circumcision does significantly decrease the risk of contracting and/or transmitting STIs.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby guru » Sat Jul 02, 2011 1:47 pm

BisonHurdler wrote: That said, it is commonly taught (although I haven't looked into the literature myself yet) that male circumcision does significantly decrease the risk of contracting and/or transmitting STIs.



Not to mention penile cancer. Though relatively rare either way, when it does occur it usually gets it's start in the foreskin.

And most women prefer their men be circumcised, perhaps partly aesthetics, but mainly because of the very real concern that an uncircumcised man presents a bigger health risk to them.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Marlow » Sat Jul 02, 2011 1:48 pm

polevaultpower wrote:The 60% number comes from a single study of Africans who were circumcised as adults. There's no evidence that circumcising an American newborn will make them less likely to catch an STD later.

There were three African studies . . .

The latest research involved 3,393 HIV-negative heterosexual adolescent boys and men from Uganda who were part of the original HIV study. About half were randomly selected to undergo circumcision right away while the rest had the procedure 2 years later. All had physical exams and were offered voluntary HIV counseling and condoms. After two years, herpes infection was detected in 114 circumcised men compared with 153 uncircumcised men. HPV was detected in 42 circumcised men compared with 80 uncircumcised men. There was no significant difference between the two groups on rate of syphilis infections. The researchers considered condom use, number of sex partners and other factors to calculate the risk reductions


I agree that the numbers are NOT compelling, but I'm always on the 'rather be safe than sorry' side, and yes, MOST women 'prefer' a cut man . . . according to a highly scientific study I made in a dorm room of girls one day in college . . . :wink:
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Re: Circumcision

Postby gh » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:00 pm

polevaultpower wrote:
gh wrote:This is a good topic, and one which, by the way, I would have had no problem with on the Not Track forum before now.


I dunno gh, this topic gets really heated on parenting message boards :twisted:


I gots no problem with "heated" so long as it does't turn personal. There's nothing in the thread itself that's proscribed.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby guru » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:03 pm

polevaultpower wrote: My son is welcome to choose to get circumcised when he gets older and can make an informed decision for himself!



For various reasons, circumcision a much more difficult proposition as the male gets older.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby scottmitchell74 » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:22 pm

I realized that this is "our" version of "genital mutilation." It's something I honestly hadn't given much thought to, but it is an interesting issue.


Male circumcision and female genital mutilation aren't even in the same solar system, in my opinion.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:36 pm

Most women "prefer" a circumcised penis because that's what they grow up seeing around them. I don't mean that in a sexual way, but between brothers, baby-sitting, textbooks, etc, that is what is perceived as "normal". I suspect that in 20-30 years, the average american woman will be a lot more comfortable with an intact penis.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Pego » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:54 pm

polevaultpower wrote:Most women "prefer" a circumcised penis because that's what they grow up seeing around them. I don't mean that in a sexual way, but between brothers, baby-sitting, textbooks, etc, that is what is perceived as "normal". I suspect that in 20-30 years, the average american woman will be a lot more comfortable with an intact penis.


It is not entirely cultural. Circumcised penis is cleaner that adds a lot to the "more preferable" status.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby gh » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:05 pm

guru wrote:
polevaultpower wrote: My son is welcome to choose to get circumcised when he gets older and can make an informed decision for himself!



For various reasons, circumcision a much more difficult proposition as the male gets older.


Josh Kimeto, who won the '76 (?) NCAA 5K for Washington State, was once asked why American distance runners weren't as good as their Kenyan counterparts. Kimeto was one of the less-reserved Kenyans, and he said, "American distance runners don't understand pain."

Queried as to how he could make that kind of statement, he said, "Pain is when you're 13 and the village elders take you out into the forest, lay your dick on a flat rock and pound the foreskin off with a sharp one. And you're not supposed to show that it hurts. That's pain."

[note: I did not hear this directly from Kimeto, but did from multiple people who were there when he said it]
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:17 pm

Pego wrote:Circumcised penis is cleaner


Rubbish. Not if a guy bathes regularly.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Pego » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:24 pm

polevaultpower wrote:
Pego wrote:Circumcised penis is cleaner


Rubbish. Not if a guy bathes regularly.


Many don't.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Marlow » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:28 pm

polevaultpower wrote:
Pego wrote:Circumcised penis is cleaner

Rubbish. Not if a guy bathes regularly.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You do understand the oxymoronic humor in your conditional statement, right? :twisted:
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:32 pm

Pego wrote:
polevaultpower wrote:
Pego wrote:Circumcised penis is cleaner


Rubbish. Not if a guy bathes regularly.


Many don't.


OK but a circumcised guy who doesn't bathe regularly is gross too. Maybe the tip of his penis is marginally cleaner, but there are plenty of other nooks and crannies in that region of the body that would be smelly and gross without proper cleaning.

I am sure that many/most American women have a perception that uncircumcised penises are dirtier than circumcised ones, but that's not based in reality, just a cultural bias.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby gh » Sat Jul 02, 2011 4:28 pm

My take is that (correct me if I'm wrong, since I have no way to test the thesis!) just "bathing" isn't enough; it requires specific cleaning. And first you have teach the little booger that, and then you need to remember that he's a GUY, and for much of his life it'll be one of those "why should I care?" tasks that won't get done.

I certainly remember no end of smegma jokes as a teenager, relative to few unsnipped among us.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby polevaultpower » Sat Jul 02, 2011 5:44 pm

gh wrote:My take is that (correct me if I'm wrong, since I have no way to test the thesis!) just "bathing" isn't enough; it requires specific cleaning. And first you have teach the little booger that, and then you need to remember that he's a GUY, and for much of his life it'll be one of those "why should I care?" tasks that won't get done.


Oh my goodness, you guys are hilarious. Here read this, it'll be less awkward than me trying to explain how to clean an intact penis: http://www.cirp.org/library/hygiene/

When they are old enough to need to clean that area, it's not any more complicated than making sure your butt is clean. I'd imagine they'll figure it out on their own, but maybe we'll throw in an awkward conversation with dad for good measure.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby mojo » Sat Jul 02, 2011 5:59 pm

Wow breastfeeding not much response. Penises? Whoa the board lights up with activity! :D

No real opinion on this regarding males-had two girls and of course they were circumcised immediately.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Cooter Brown » Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:06 pm

Pego wrote:Many don't.


Don't bring the French into this.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby 26mi235 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 10:59 am

We decided not to circumcise our adopted son (nine months at the time), having looked at various opinions. I do not think there is a right or wrong.

One issue is that he 'does not look like other kids', except that the rates have equalized enough that it is 'majority' thing, not 'only one in twenty', and I suspect will equalize more over time.
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Marlow » Sun Jul 03, 2011 12:33 pm

polevaultpower wrote:Oh my goodness, you guys are hilarious. Here read this, it'll be less awkward than me trying to explain how to clean an intact penis: http://www.cirp.org/library/hygiene/
When they are old enough to need to clean that area, it's not any more complicated than making sure your butt is clean.

OK, Becca, stop now - you're just grossing me out now!! :oops: :shock: :twisted:
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Re: Circumcision

Postby JRM » Sun Jul 03, 2011 12:43 pm

Marlow wrote:
polevaultpower wrote:OK, Becca, stop now - you're just grossing me out now!! :oops: :shock: :twisted:


Are you learning something new, Marlow?
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Re: Circumcision

Postby Marlow » Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:27 pm

JRM wrote:
Marlow wrote:
polevaultpower wrote:OK, Becca, stop now - you're just grossing me out now!!

Are you learning something new, Marlow?

Discussing c*** and a** cleaning? lalalalalalalalalalalala . . . i can't HEAR you!! :shock: :shock: :shock:
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Re: Circumcision

Postby lonewolf » Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:45 pm

You made the right decision, Becca.
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