Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Circumcision's complications: what could go wrong?

The web is peppered with articles about circumcision. But for parents there is a vital area of information about circumcision that often goes unaddressed: What could go wrong?

Circumcision is a surgical procedure, and as such it does have complications. However, no medical organization tracks complication rates or severity, so it's hard to find a good estimate of either. When making medical decisions on behalf of their children, parents deserve and need complete information about any procedure and its hazards.

Digging deep reveals surprising facts. Complications range in severity from the "mild:" excessive bleeding, infection (including antibiotic resistant Staphylococcus), to the severe: surgically caused genital deformity, accidental amputation, and even death. And complication rates are higher in children circumcised shortly after birth than in older children (and presumably adults also), possibly because surgery on such a small child is more intricate.

Addressing complications

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