What is foreskin removal?

Removal of the foreskin can be used for skin grafts or medical research.

Removal of the foreskin is the surgical amputation of the male foreskin. This process is often called circumcision, particularly when performed for non-urgent purposes at birth or ritualistically later in life. Reasons men undergo foreskin removal include religious, medical, military and health reasons, although there are many personal reasons men are circumcised.

Removal of the foreskin is the surgical amputation of the male foreskin.

In the United States and many other countries, removal of the baby’s foreskin is usually performed under local anesthesia, while older men are usually given general anesthesia with the surgery performed while the patient is sleeping. It is not mandatory for adults and older men to be put to sleep during the procedure as it can easily be performed under local anesthesia. Adults typically have a longer recovery time and more complicated foreskin removal surgery than babies, often requiring stitches and taking about three weeks to heal. Men should refrain from erections of any origin and also limit contact with the penis. Babies heal in five to ten days, with no need for special abstentions.

Elderly patients undergoing foreskin removal will need general anesthesia.

While adult foreskin removal is usually performed using only surgical tools and therefore requiring stitches, there are specially designed devices used for in-hospital baby circumcisions. These devices pinch the skin, stopping blood flow to the foreskin, and some remain on the penis until the wound has completely healed. Designed to prevent accidents in the detailed process of removing the foreskin, such as cutting off the baby’s penis, these devices are often used in conjunction with a restraint board to which the baby is strapped to limit movement.

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In the United States and many other countries, removal of a baby’s foreskin is usually performed under local anesthesia.

In religious ceremonies, the procedure is much the same, especially in countries where medical equipment is readily available for use. Even in areas without these benefits, the procedure is still typically performed by a community specialist who is usually responsible for the procedure for more than just one man over the course of his career as a circumciser. The exact amount of foreskin removed can vary, with some leaving part of the foreskin attached. In some traditions, the foreskin is ritually eaten or buried. The removed foreskins can also be used for skin grafts or medical research.

The healing process of circumcision can take up to seven days in babies.

There are conflicting reports about the medical benefits of foreskin removal surgeries. It has been argued that removing the foreskin makes the penis more hygienic, which is often refuted by anti-circumcision activists, demonstrating that with proper cleaning there is no difference. Reports claiming that surgery reduces HIV risks have also been disputed, with some even arguing otherwise. The same claims have been made for other sexually transmitted diseases, with equally compelling arguments refuting these claims. Questions about medical benefits are often linked to concerns about when the surgery is best implemented, as it is often performed on babies, although most of the claimed benefits are not relevant until the boy reaches sexual maturity.

It is claimed that removing the foreskin makes the penis more hygienic.

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Almost all anti-circumcision advocates argue against circumcision of infants and minors, as well as legal or medically obligatory circumcision of men in general, but not against circumcision freely chosen by consenting adults. Whether surgery is good or bad for the body, the question of whether parents or the institution have the right to elect a child to have surgery that is not medically necessary is an ethical concern.

The clearest commonality between the two sides is that it is easy to perform foreskin removal on an adult, but impossible to reverse when performed on a child who later despises that this choice was made on his or her behalf. Medical, social and ethical opinions on this topic continue to develop as conventional wisdom is questioned, often leading to changes in policy and cultural practice.

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