Should You Circumcise? Study Offers Another New Finding in the Circumcision Debate

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ByKylie McConville
Mar 2020
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Photo: Shutterstock / The Bump

A new study, just published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, found that the benefits of male circumcision to health exceed the risks by over 100 to 1, with the rate of circumcised baby boys up 81 percent in the last decade alone. Led by Brian Morris, professor at the School of Medical Sciences at the University of Sydney, researchers found that over the course of a lifetime, uncircumcised males will contract at least one adverse medical condition due to their foreskin.

In a report sent off to the American Academy of Pediatrics, Morris said, “The new findings now show that infant circumcision should be regarded as equivalent to childhood vaccination and that as such it would be unethical not to routinely offer parents circumcision for their baby boy. Delay puts the child’s health at risk and will usually mean it will never happen.” The findings only add fuel to the circumcision debate fire. During the course of the study, Morris and his team found that though circumcision rates have risen to 91 percent in white men, 76 percent in black men and 44 percent in Hispanic men, there seems to be an alarming decrease in infants due, in part to two factors: A rise in the Hispanic population and the absence of Medicaid coverage for poor families in 18 US states. Morris noted that Hispanic families tend to be less familiar with the circumcision “custom” and are less likely to do so. Now, the study’s findings only add to the AAP’s push for more education and access to infant male circumcisions.

As part of the study, Morris and his co-author, Tom Wiswell, from the Center for Neonatal Care, found that at least one in every three UTIs occur in uncircumcised males. Now, Morris and his team are working to send their message to bigger, more influential parties like doctors, specialists, educators, policy makers, governments and insurance agencies to ensure that information, education and accessibility to circumcision procedures are available to new parents.

To his credit, Morris has also shown that a circumcision during infancy has been shown to be a cost-saver for parents and it’s a safe, simple procedure, done under local anesthesia.

What do you think? Is it better to circumcise?

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