IN THIS ARTICLE
Why It May Be Done
Because it's not usually medically needed, circumcision is done on newborns mainly for cultural reasons. For example, parents may make the decision about circumcision based on religious and family traditions, personal preferences, or the social norms of their communities.
There may be some health benefits for circumcised males, but these benefits must be weighed against the risks. Medical experts in the United States agree that these health benefits alone are not good enough reasons to have circumcision.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) does not recommend circumcision as a routine procedure for newborn males. When making this policy, the AAP looked at the possible benefits, risks, and costs of the procedure.2 Other major medical organizations, including the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, agree with this policy.
In a baby's first year of life, urinary tract infections (UTIs) happen less often in circumcised boys than in boys who are not circumcised. But UTIs are not common. No studies support healthy babies having circumcision to prevent UTIs.3, 4, 5
There may be reasons later in life when your son may need a circumcision. A boy or man may have problems retracting the foreskin or may have swelling of the foreskin that requires circumcision.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
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