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(25 Posts)
Darlingdamsel Mon 06-Jun-11 07:51:50

Hi ? I just realised that I have never read or heard anything about when they do this on the NHS. I know my nephew had it happened the day after he was born in the US and the hospital gave them gauze and such to use until the scar healed. As I am having a boy, I wondered what to expect?


ZumbaRumba Mon 06-Jun-11 07:53:06

Remove this post and ring up your GP surgery to enquire. Seriously. This post will end up in a bunfight, with you being annihilated for wanting to circumcise your son. I say this for your own good, trust me!

usualsuspect Mon 06-Jun-11 07:55:10


pooka Mon 06-Jun-11 07:57:47

They don't.

Circumcision only performed on nhs for medical reasons, usually when a child is much older and has, for exa,ple, persistent infection, or particular hypospadias.

It isn't seen as a necessary or desirable as a routine. Rightly so. The nhs should not be involved IMO in operating on infants for religious purposes - hence the fact that only severe medical grounds are seen as a justification for nhs ops.

pooka Mon 06-Jun-11 07:59:30

If you look on wiki for example under "circumcision rates Europe" there are stats that show in general European countries follow the same protocol.

ZumbaRumba Mon 06-Jun-11 08:11:52

Yeah, go on - Wiki circumcision. Maybe Youtube it, too.


pooka Mon 06-Jun-11 11:04:10


What's your problem? Only suggesting source of info on circumcision rates since the op was wondering what was the norm over here.

eurochick Mon 06-Jun-11 11:06:45

I'm not sure the NHS is there to routinely mutilate baby boys using taxpayer funds....

GibberingGinger Mon 06-Jun-11 13:41:20

The reason you don't see any threads on it, is cause they always decend into huge fights. Its such an emotive subject. <dons protective clothing>

For what it's worth I asked midwives, scbu staff, doctors, not cause I was desperate to have it done but cause I wanted infromation, and was told that NHS would not do it unless for health reasons, and even then it would be done at a much older age one they had established the extent of health problems and their consequences. The NHS plastic surgeon I was talking to about it (I was talking to her about other health issues with my son, and thought I would ask) said she didn't even know of anyone who did it privately in Scotland any more. It's just too taboo for many surgeons to go there.

sh77 Mon 06-Jun-11 13:53:11

Lots of NHS docs/surgeons do it privately - £90-£130. Very widely available in UK. Not available on the NHS - would be very unethical for the NHS to provide it for religious reasons (if that is your reason).

You will be told to get Calpol in case baby gets a temp and an antiseptic cream/powder.

Primafacie Mon 06-Jun-11 16:28:55

You can also have it done at the Portland and various other private hospitals in London, using the plastibell method.

kviddy Tue 07-Jun-11 09:38:18

I'm assuming you are American too. It's very normal for us. I didn't really think about it too much before the birth of Ds. Hubby said no and I was fine to leave the penis decisions to him. I'll tell you what though- after the hell of an episotomy no one else in this family will ever have their genitals cut.
Really think about it before you subject your son to it. I've since read up on it- it's really, really not worth it for non medical reasons. Even though it's simply norm in some cultures.

EldritchCleavage Wed 08-Jun-11 15:59:24

If you want to do it early I suggest finding a GP who is also a mohel who will do it privately for you. That is your best bet anyway as they are the most practised and adept at it. Someone I know went this route and found a Jewish GP
in North London to do it for her.

girlfromdownsouth Thu 09-Jun-11 15:00:09

As others have said the NHS will only do it for genuine medical reasons. I looked into it with DS as every male in my DH's family has had to have a circumsicion for various reasons at various ages and I wanted to do it while he was too young to remember.

However I was told that was not possible. It turned out he does have a medical problem too TMI Warning! His foreskin is very tight and the hole he pees out of was very small so the penis could balloon up with wee and he got a lot of infections but the NHS still resisted. They suggested gently stretching the foreskin after a bath and that seems to have worked.

If you feel strongly about it I suggest you look into getting it done privately.

Strix Thu 09-Jun-11 15:25:42

The NHS doesn't believe in treating a problem which has not yet presented itself. You will get no joy there. Circumcision is much better performed very early (ideally in first few weeks). So, if you are going to do it, you really should seek your options sooner rather than later.

I too am American and understand you will not have expected some of the horrible comments that will probably be flung at you on this thread. But, you might want to keep your plans to yourself in this country. Many people are truly horrified by this practice.

sc2987 Thu 09-Jun-11 20:36:51

Apart from physical malformations, the only medical benefits to circumcision are a slightly decreased risk of UTIs (unimportant IMO, especially as most can be prevented other ways) and a lower risk of giving your partner the virus which causes cervical cancer. Of course if you actually care about your partners, perhaps avoiding unprotected sex would be preferable to cutting off a delicate piece of skin which serves a function.

I have never understood why FGM is so taboo in the West when people will happily mutilate their sons...

NigellaLawless Thu 09-Jun-11 21:47:20

"I have never understood why FGM is so taboo in the West when people will happily mutilate their sons..."

Sorry sc2987 but I really must respond to that comment...

I am no particular fan of unecessary male circumcision, however, to compare the surgical circumcision of baby boys with the genital mutiliation of girls is completely misleading and could be deeply offensive to many people.

In order to try and wipe out the practise fo female genital mutilation we have to be honest about the hideous and devastating impact of its practise on the lives (and deaths) of women and girls: comparing female genital mutiliation with male circumcision carried out under surgical conditions leaves people unclear about just how deeply women suffer as a result of genital mutilation and it allows those who carry out the mutilations to continue hiding behind mistaken beliefs and misconceptions.

Sorry to OP for side tracking your thread!

pooka Thu 09-Jun-11 22:21:07

But Nigellalawless, just as there are differences in male circumcision (i.e. small part of foreskin taken as part of religious ceremony/ritual or larger area removed by plastibell method, complete removal of foreskin), there are different 'grades' or severity of female genital mutilation or circumcision - obviously the complete removal of clitoris and mutilation of labia is the most severe and that most commonly reported. But in some practices, ritual female circumcision can involve the removal of a small part of the labia, or the piercing of the labia.

Now personally I find all instances of FGM abhorrent and vile. But I do not think it is unreasonable to compare the removal of part of an infant's penis with some practices of FGM, by any stretch of the imagination.

The difference between the two is really only down to cultural acceptance. For some reason we (or some people) see infant male circumcision as OK and FGM as inherently wrong.

Obviously if medically required then there is no choice and of course it is better to have a circumcision than to have physical problems relating to urination/sex in the future.

Strix Fri 10-Jun-11 11:22:11

FGM is a horror that bears no relationship to male circumcision.

There are a few more medical benefits to circumcision:

pooka Fri 10-Jun-11 12:33:34

Well that's a matter of opinion.

I find routine male circumcision abhorrent. I find female circumcision abhorrent.

Medical benefits? From your link:
*"Poor personal hygiene, smoking and exposure to wart virus (human papilloma virus) increase the risk of developing penile cancer at least as much as being uncircumcised.
Circumcised men are more at risk from penile warts than uncircumcised men, and the risk of developing penile cancer is now almost equal in the two groups. Therefore, routine circumcision cannot be recommended to prevent penile cancer.*

So basic personal hygiene sufficient.

Ditto use of condoms.

Seems rather draconian to amputate part of a child's body as a preventative measure, when education and instruction in personal hygiene and safe sex should do the job. Obviously for the actual medical complaints listed in your link, circumcision may be indicated. But generally not something that would be required in a newborn infant.

Strix Fri 10-Jun-11 13:27:25

The thing is being circumcised as an infant is not anywhere near as painful or traumatic as it is for an older child or adult. So, many parents choose circumcision as a preventative (medical) measure so that that their sons won't have to experience it later.

I am not suggesting you circumcise your sons of course. But, I do understand why many people in America do choose this course. My sister has not had her sons circumcised. But, most of my friends have. And they certainly have not done so with cruel intentions.

And, if you live in America, non circ boys are very likely to be laughed at by the girls in their teenage/early adult years. "eeeeewwww" is a common reaction. It is cultural/medical.

Being an American I understand the above. And no way would I or any American I know have the same understanding of FGM.

I don't think the OP is coming back anyway.

dadof2ofthem Sun 19-Jun-11 10:53:46

a baby boy feels pain in exactly the same way as an adult, it's just you can put up with his creis because babys cry alot anyway
as for male / female circumcision, clearly the female type can be worse depending on the severity . is this a reason not to compare the two? certainly in the arabian peninsula and the countries in the horn of africa where it takes place refere to it as the same , boys and girls are both circumcised, thats the way they see it.
it was an american doctor in the 30's who produced a paper linking cirvical cancer with not being circumcised, it was quickly prooved wrong but by then the american medical establishment was grossing a milion per year from the quick proceedure.
doctors in sweeden have outlawd it totaly, they say they refuse to remove healthy tissue .
one thing in favour of circumcision, a freind of mine had a tight forskin, he ripped it once and had to get circumcised at the age of 20, the subsiquent desensitization his penis had to go through over the following days made his penis look like, and i quote "a coke can".
i dont think this is a good reason to be snip-happy at birth, but it's the only circumcision argument that holds any water for me .

BertieBotts Sun 19-Jun-11 12:34:05

"The thing is being circumcised as an infant is not anywhere near as painful or traumatic as it is for an older child or adult."

How do you know?? At least as an adult you can give informed consent. At least as a child or older you can have proper anaesthetic. And you're likely to be toilet trained (so not immersing the wound in urine about once every 30 minutes)

"And, if you live in America, non circ boys are very likely to be laughed at by the girls in their teenage/early adult years. "eeeeewwww" is a common reaction. It is cultural/medical."

But the OP doesn't live in America. And anyway, since the circumcision rate is now around 50% (or lower, now?) amongst the peers of any baby boy born now, an uncircumcised penis isn't going to be the big deal it was a generation ago.

BertieBotts Sun 19-Jun-11 12:34:39

In the US, I mean (relating to my last sentence)

ohanotherone Mon 20-Jun-11 20:19:11

The idea that a parent can multilate their child in this way is disgusting. The penis is theirs not yours to chop up for no good reason.

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