Circumcision is the removal of the foreskin of the penis. Circumcision of your newborn son is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics but is not medically required. The medical benefits are listed below. There are valid reasons both for and against circumcision, as outlined in the pamphlet “Circumcision: Pros and Cons,” published by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
We perform newborn circumcisions using the Plastibell devise. We believe it is the safest way to perform newborn circumcisions. A plastic disc is placed over the glans (“head”) of the penis and the foreskin is removed. There will be a clear plastic ring around the penis which is held in place by a small string. The ring will fall off on its own, usually in five to seven days. It takes 1-2 weeks for the penis to fully heal.
The baby will first be given a small amount of sugar solution by mouth and then a small injection of xylocaine, an anesthetic, at the base of the penis on each side. This nerve block will result in numbness of the entire penis. In most cases, the subsequent circumcision will be painless. The only common side effect of the anesthesia is bruising at the injection site.
Just as in any medical procedure, there are some potential risks. Complications have been reported to occur in one to five percent of circumcisions.
- Retained Plastibell
- Too little or excess skin removal
- Concealed penis
- Meatal Stenosis
- Decreased urinary infections in first year of life
- Decreased cancer of the penis in adulthood
- Decreased STDs/HIV
- Easier genital hygiene
- Avoids phimosis
- Decreases foreskin infections, and need for later circumcision
- Social/cultural/religious reasons
Plastibell Circumcision Care
- Sponge bathe until Plastibell falls off
- Apply Vaseline Gauze or liberal amounts of Vaseline to the penis with each diaper change
- There is usually what appears to be a slight separation of the skin edges as the plastic ring separates; this is only temporary. You may notice some whitish or yellowish material between the skin edges or on the glans. This is fibrin and not pus; it is a normal blood product associated with healing.
Please call the office if any of the following occur:
- The plastic ring is still in place after seven days. The plastic ring usually falls off five to seven days after the circumcision. If it falls off earlier and there is no bleeding, there is no problem.
- Severe swelling and marked discoloration or swelling of the scrotum or groin. It is normal for the penis to become a little swollen and slightly discolored.
- The Plastibell slides down the penis when it separates, rather than falls off. This rarely occurs (1 in 1,000).