February 16, 2010
Neonatal And Infant Circumcision: Safe In The Right Hands
How safe is circumcision? A systematic review, published in the open access journal BMC Urology has found that neonatal and infant circumcision by trained staff rarely results in problems. Risks can be higher among older boys, especially when undertaken by untrained providers with inappropriate equipment.
Dr Helen Weiss, from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK, studied the medical literature relating to circumcision. Dr Weiss said, "We identified 52 studies from 21 countries which included sufficient information to estimate frequency of adverse events following neonatal, infant and child circumcision. This forms a systematic review of the published literature on complications associated with the procedure at young ages."
Dr Weiss said, "Male circumcision is commonly practiced and will continue to occur for religious, cultural and medical reasons. There is a clear need to improve safety of male circumcision at all ages through improved training or re-training for both traditional and medically trained providers, and to ensure that providers have adequate supplies of necessary equipment and instruments for safe circumcision".
* Complications of circumcision in male neonates, infants and children: a systematic review. Helen A Weiss, Natasha Larke, Daniel Halperin and Inon Schenker. BMC Urology (in press)
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