Circumcision - The Need, The Procedure & Recovery!

Written and reviewed by
MBBS, MS - General Surgery, Fellowship in Minimal Access Surgery, FBMS
General Surgeon, Pune  •  20years experience
Circumcision - The Need, The Procedure & Recovery!

Circumcision is the surgical removal of the foreskin in the male genitalia. This procedure is common for newly born baby boys. However, the procedure is widely popular due to religious and cultural traditions, but it is only recommended when it is medically necessary.

Why it is Done

Circumcision is a religious or spiritual culture for Islamic and Jewish families. It can be a matter of personal hygiene or preventive health care.

Sometimes it can also be performed in case of some medical needs like urinary tract infections, penile problems, or if the foreskin of penis is too tight to be retracted. It also decreases the chances of sexually transmitted disease or penile cancer.

Benefits of Circumcision:

There are some health benefits of circumcision. For example:

  1. Genital hygiene becomes simpler.

  2. UTI risk reduction.

  3. Penile cancer risk reduction.

  4. STD risks, both male-to-female and female-to-male reduction.

  5. Prevents balanitis, phimosis or paraphimosis.

Procedure of Circumcision:

When the right procedure is followed, circumcision is more than just a snip to the foreskin. Here are the basic steps of the procedure:

  1. Topical anesthesia is administered.

  2. The foreskin is separated from the glans (in case of a younger person).

  3. Dead cells holding the foreskin and glans together (smegma) is removed.

  4. Foreskin is put back in position, covering the glans.

  5. The foreskin is then snipped with scissors on the upper part.

  6. Another snip is made on the underside.

  7. The foreskin at the rim of the coronal groove is cut.

  8. The edges of the foreskin are stretched.

  9. Absorbable stitches are used to tie blood vessels.

  10. Edges of the foreskin are suture to complete the procedure.

This process is beneficial. However, aftercare must be taken very seriously to avoid further injury or infection.

Post Circumcision Recovery:

The recovery time after circumcision is at least 7-10 days. People can take up to a month to heal from the wounds. Here are the things to keep in mind:

  1. It can take up to 24 hours for light bleeding to stop and normal urination abilities to return.

  2. During this time the patient needs to be at rest and not participate in activities such as sports and avoid transport.

  3. The lubricating dressing falls off on its own in 24 hours. It should not be removed with force.

  4. Antibiotics and pain relief medicines should be taken as prescribed.

  5. Cosmetic products must be avoided for a week.

  6. Tight-fitting clothes must be avoided. Loose clothes should be ready for the patient to wear after surgery.

  7. Sex and masturbation must be avoided until total healing, which may take up to two months.

  8. Plenty of water must be consumed to avoid acidic urination that can cause a burning sensation.

  9. For the first two weeks, spicy food should be avoided in order to ensure bowel movement is normal and does not strain on the area where surgery was performed.

Risk Factors:

If not done from a certified medical surgeon, circumcision can be risky in the following ways:

  1. Injury to the penis.

  2. Infection.

  3. Hemorrhage.

  4. Entrapment of penis in scar tissues.

  5. Erectile dysfunction or loss of libido.


Circumcision, therefore, must be performed if it is required due to health reasons, and only by a certified surgeon, following the proper medical procedures.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult a specialist & get answers to your questions!
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