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Paediatric Circumcision

Why is my son having this done?

There are several reasons to perform a circumcision on boys. 

These are;

  • The foreskin is persistently tight and unable to retract (phimosis).
    All boys are born with a phimosis, and with time the foreskin usually becomes retractable. This usually occurs by the age of 4. If this doesn’t occur, and the foreskin causes problems with toileting, then a circumcision can be performed.

  • Infection
    A small proportion of boys will have recurrent infections of their foreskin (balanitis). Circumcision is an effective way of treating this.

  • UTI (Urinary Tract Infection)
    Some boys are prone to urinary infection, and the foreskin can be the source of the infection. Circumcision can be very effective at reducing the risk of a UTI.

Procedure

The procedure is performed under general anaesthetic at Grace Hospital. In addition, caudal anaesthesia is often used, which ensures excellent pain relief after the operation, so recovery is stress-free. Your anaesthetist will discuss this with you.

The foreskin is removed, and dissolving sutures are used. A dressing is not usually required. 

Post-Procedure

After the operation, your son will go to recovery, and then to "Day Stay". He will have his own room and can watch tv or a movie while he recovers. Once the effects of the anaesthetic have worn off, and he is eating and drinking, he can go home, (which is usually around lunchtime).

You will have a prescription for pain relief as well as Betadine ointment, which is placed on the suture line twice a day. 

It is very important to have a good plan for recovery. This is a minor procedure, but it is still important for your boy to take it easy postoperatively. Usually, this would entail a week off school or preschool. Avoiding sports is important, as well as staying away from swimming pools and the beach.

Teenagers may need a longer period of recovery.

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Risks of the procedure

A circumcision is a safe procedure, and the risks are low. Infection is rare. Very occasionally (<1%), bleeding can occur after the operation, which necessitates a return to theatre. Sensitivity of the head of the penis can be bothersome in older boys, although this does settle with time.

Follow-up

We will review your son at Bay Urology about 4 weeks after the procedure. 

If there are any concerns, either contact Bay Urology, or Grace Hospital

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