Thursday, March 21, 2013

Recent circumcision developments

November 2012, UK: ‘In the past six years, 343 labiaplasties were performed in the UK NHS on girls aged 14 or under. Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2236675/Hundreds-girls-aged-14-having-designer-vagina-surgery-NHS.html#ixzz2OBXJtBx0


September 2012. Medically necessary circumcisions in Brazil kill one in 7700. This, applied to the rate of infant circumcisions in the U.S. would result in 156 deaths per year. Currently, estimates estimates in the intactivist community are of 117 deaths per year (one in approximately 11,000) while the AAFP estimates 1 death in 500,000 (which would still result in at least 2 or 3 deaths per year)


March 2013: Pediatrics published a rebuttal to the AAP's Policy Statement on Circumcision from 38 heads or spokespeople for the paediatric associations of Austria, Britain, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands, and senior paediatricians in Canada, the Czech Republic, France and Poland, accusing the AAP of cultural bias, and finding fault with its methodology, its conclusions, and its ethics. The AAP responded trying to blame the European doctors for being culturally biased against circumcision. This on its own is evidence that circumcision in the United States is done only for cultural reasons (even if it's justified as religion, tradition or prevention). To put things in perspective, no country is being accused of being culturally biased towards amputated/unamputated arms, legs, breasts or any other part of the body, since those amputations are only performed based on medical needs, not on parental preference (or medical pressure to do so).


March 2013: Michigan State University Clinical Professor Robert Van Howe and Berkeley lawyer J Steven Svoboda published an article in the Journal of Medical Ethics which comprehensively takes down the American Academy of Pediatrics' 2012 circumcision policy focusing on the ethical issues. “When physicians decide whether to do a procedure, they must, and normally do, exclude from their medical decisions non-medical factors regarding the parents’ culture. Contrary to what the AAP suggests, doctors are not cultural brokers. Their duty is promoting and protecting the health of their patients, not following practices lacking a solid ethical and medical foundation.”


March 2013: Attorneys for the Rights of the Child disclosed that since 1985, more than 80 million dollars have been paid out in settlements for wrongful and botched circumcisions. Two of the cases totaled $18.3 million against Mogen Circumcision Instruments Ltd, makers of the Mogen clamp (which has the risk of partial or full amputation of the glans). The company has gone out of business, but the Mogen clamps are still widely used, particularly in Canada by Dr. Neil Pollock and doctors who receive training on his "new technique". A recent study by Rebeca Plank concluded that "we consider the Mogen clamp to be a safer choice than the Plastibell for public sector scaleup in HIV-prevention programs" even though they acknowledged the reports of partial amputations of the glans.


March 2013: The Canadian Pediatric Society is expected to reveal a new policy on circumcision, which is likely to be more positive towards circumcision (in line with the AAP - and in opposition to most of the Western world).


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