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    Benefits Of Circumcision Exceed Risks 100 To 1
    By News Staff | April 3rd 2014 12:39 AM | 19 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments

    Like everything else in science and medicine, there is modern controversy about circumcision. In the United States the rate of circumcision is around 81%.

    A paper in Mayo Clinic Proceedings finds that the benefits of infant male circumcision to health exceed the risks by over 100 to 1. Brian Morris, Professor Emeritus in the School of Medical Sciences at the University of Sydney and his colleagues in Florida and Minnesota found that over their lifetime half of uncircumcised males will contract an adverse medical condition caused by their foreskin. The findings add considerable weight to the latest American Academy of Pediatrics policy that supports education and access for infant male circumcision.

    In infancy the strongest immediate benefit is protection against urinary tract infections (UTIs) that can damage the kidney in half of babies who get a UTI. Morris and co-investigator Tom Wiswell, MD, Center for Neonatal Care, Orlando, showed last year that over the lifetime UTIs affect 1 in 3 uncircumcised males. In a systematic review, Morris, with John Krieger, MD, Department of Urology, University of Washington, Seattle, showed that there is no adverse effect of circumcision on sexual function, sensitivity, or pleasure, which dispelled one myth perpetuated by opponents of the procedure.

    Whereas circumcision rates have risen in white men to 91%, in black men to 76%, and in Hispanic men to 44%, the study authors found an alarming decrease in infants. To get the true figures they had to correct hospital discharge data for underreporting. This showed that circumcision had declined from a high of 83% in the 1960s to 77% today.

    There seemed to be two major reasons for the fall.

    • One is a result of demographic changes, with the rise in the Hispanic population. Hispanic families tend to be less familiar with the custom, making them less likely to circumcise their baby boys.

    • The other is the current absence of Medicaid coverage for the poor in 18 US states. In those states circumcision is 24% lower.

    Professor Morris stated, "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."

    Taken together, the new findings should send a strong message to medical practitioners, professional bodies, educators, policy makers, governments, and insurers to promote this safe, simple procedure, best done in infancy under local anesthesia and to increase access and third party coverage, especially for poor families, who tend to suffer most from foreskin-related diseases. Infant circumcision has, moreover, been shown to be cost saving.



    Comments

    Bonny Bonobo alias Brat
    Lubos Motl has written an informative article today on this same subject at his Reference Frame website called 'Circumcision is a cruel ancient ritual' which I thought was a good read, very analytical with a lot of interesting links :-

    Circumcision increases the population growth rate by killing masturbation
    The percentage of newborn boys in the U.S. who are circumcised has dropped from 83% fifty years ago to 77% today. The U.S. mainstream media present this nearly undetectable change as the end of the world (one of fifty ends of the world that they frequently cover). MSNBC's title reads Circumcision Rate Falls Despite Health Risks (MSNBC)
    while others offer even more dramatic summaries:
    Circumcision should be seen 'in the same light as childhood vaccination': study (CTV News)
    You may see that this hysteria is largely generated by real physicians with real degrees, MD. You may imagine that I find this propaganda stunning because I would subscribe to Penn and Teller's Bullshit, episode Circumcision (30-minute video).
    My article about researchers identifying a potential blue green algae cause & L-Serine treatment for Lou Gehrig's ALS, MND, Parkinsons & Alzheimers is at http://www.science20.com/forums/medicine
    Male circumcision is cleaner and healthier.

    It is certainly not healthier to have only partial genitals. The rates of STDs, HPV and HIV are much lower in natural EU and JP as compared to mostly partial genital US. IN the US the slightly higher UTI rate is clearly linked to doctors/parents and care givers retracting young boys, messing with the sterile package and causing the infection.

    For hygienic reasons MEN should keep all of THEIR genitals. It is actually not cleaner to have cut up genitals. It has now also been observed that natural boys have about the same bacteria as natural girls and that cut boys have different (invasive) bacteria (such as Staph A).

    Circumcision is neither cleaner nor healthier.
    There is no medical organization of any country which says that circumcision is cleaner than daily washing.
    Is female circumcision cleaner than a woman using a washcloth daily?
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22897699
    Circumcision does some very real damage.
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1464-410X.2012.11761.x/abst...
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21672947

    Hank
    You were just about to make a valid point and then you went off the rails. NIH studies also show that males and females are different in many ways. Your argument is instead saying that stereotyping country music fans is the same as being racist against black people. In other words, you are making an example for emotional effect and you lose the people on the fence who are most inclined to agree with you.
    Scientific? Where is THAT crap scientific?

    Go. Do your research. Research Brian Morris and Gilgal-Society. THAT would be Scientific.

    That man has a reason to circ all boys, but those reasons are NOT scientific nor anywhere near ethical.

    Stop this! There ARE NO BENEFITS! Foreskin is the most erogenous part of the body! Stop violating your son's rights! 14th amendment, people!

    Tante Jay is absolutely correct about Brian Morris. For a quick read on him and his Gilgal ("Hill of Foreskins") cohorts: http://www.circleaks.org/index.php?title=Brian_J._Morris

    The Mayo Clinic as an organization should be ashamed of this report. The numbers are misleading and fail to account for empirical data from large populations of circumcised (like the U.S.) and uncircumcised groups (certain European countries). This is piss poor pseudoscientific pro-circumcision propaganda and is harmful to society.

    Keep in mind that I am not an intactivist. I am an anthropologist who studied male and female genital cutting across various cultures and wrote several research papers on the subject. I blogged about it starting with this one: http://philosophyfools.blogspot.com/2013/05/extenuating-circum-stances-p...

    KRA5H
    Lubos is a physicist not a physician. His opinion of circumcision is more likely to be cultural and not a professional medical opinion.
    Randy Rose is an anthropologist not a physician and also not able to provide a professional medical opinion.

    Skepticism is the default position until the study is published and reviewed by specialists who can provide professional opinions supporting or refuting the study.
    "This page intentionally left blank." --Gödel
    Dr. Brian Morris is not a medical doctor. He is a molecular biologist, no longer working for the University of Sydney.
    It doesn't take a mathematician or a statistics degree to see that his math bears no relation to the real world.
    One in two men with foreskins will come down with a serious condition? Tell it to Europe, where they don't circumcise, and they get far less infections. "benefits of infant male circumcision to health exceed the risks by over 100 to 1. "
    This isn't scientific. It is a bookie's odds.
    The pseudo-science should be a shame to the good name of the Mayo Clinic, the University of Sydney, and Science 2.0.
    The readers deserve better than this.
    Children deserve better than a painful operation to remove healthy tissue, based on misinformation and distortions.

    KRA5H
    I'll Point to what Hank Campbell says below: "The good thing about these studies is they teach people to be more critical - something that is often done less when it is a study advocates like."

    ...And I'll repeat what I said: "skepticism is the default position..."
    "This page intentionally left blank." --Gödel
    Doesn’t this just set off your BS detector????

    This wounding of babies and children is the health risk, there is no health risk to keeping and growing old with NATURAL genitals. In fact that is clearly the healthy option for an adult, but there is no option for children. To take part of a persons body (AMPUTATE EROGENOUS TISSUE of a non consenting CHILD) without their consent is heinous. To do this to a newborn baby is creepy, child abuse and a human rights VIOLATION.

    The practice is dying because Parents are getting the word, that this practice is very harmful to the man the baby will become. People are becoming aware that the parts that are amputated contain over 3 feet of arteries, veins and capillaries and thousands of nerve endings (well above 10,000). Of course cutting the parts off leads to sexual DYSFUNCTION. Americans are getting the word that the parts that are cut off are some of the most highly innervated parts of the human.

    Oh and there has been a health study that shows the mutilation is not healthy. It has been ongoing for more than 50 years. The results are in. Cut men (men that have had parts of their genitals cut off as a baby) get HIV and STDS at a higher rate -- natural (intact) EU has much lower HIV and STD rate than cut US. Shouldn't that just end this mutilation campaign by high HIV risk partial genital Americans??

    Here's the science - Human Genital Anatomy #101 - Neurologically, the four most specialized pressure-sensitive cells in the human body are Meissner’s corpuscles for localized light touch and fast touch, Merkel’s disc cells for light pressure and tactile form and texture, Ruffini’s corpuscles for slow sustained pressure, deep skin tension, stretch, flutter and slip, and Pacinian corpuscles for deep touch and detection of rapid external vibrations. They are found only in the tongue, lips, palms, fingertips, nipples, and the clitoris, and in the crests of the Ridged Band at the tip of the male foreskin. These remarkable cells process tens of thousands of information impulses per second and can sense texture, stretch, vibration, and movement at the micrometre level. These are the cells that allow blind people to "see" Braille with their fingertips. Cut them off and, male or female, it's like trying to read Braille with your elbow as a veritable symphony of sensation is downgraded dramatically and the victim is sub-normalized for life. A woman can live without the sensitivity of the visible part of her clitoris. A man can live without the mobile and most sensitive part of his penis. Both men and women are better off with their natural fine-touch parts undiminished - intact. And so are their sexual partners. Like a child blinded at birth, the victim of partial penis amputation may never understand what was lost, but the loss is still real. Honest and honorable people don't try to excuse such cruelty with smoke and mirrors. Male or female, infant or adult, forced genital mutilation is a clear violation of human rights.

    Chris Austin

    I was very seriously harmed by male genital mutilation. My experience is described in the following open letter to the American Academy of Pediatrics:

    http://www.science20.com/crawler_superland/blog/open_letter_american_aca...

    The sexual mutilation of a boy, by cutting off his foreskin, is a form of sexual molestation that never ends, and which the victim can never fully escape.

    Claims of health benefits from cutting off a boy's foreskin, made prior to 1980, were comprehensively refuted by Edward Wallerstein in his book, "Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy," Springer Publishing Company, New York, 1980, 19 + 281 pages.

    I addressed the problem of AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa at the start of the above letter.

    How about leaving such a decision to the guys. Wait until they are about 19. Then lay out the whole story. Then THEY DECIDE. Real simple. BTW Yours truly was circumcised as an infant. Have no idea whether I had a better or worse life because of it.

    Hank
    Circumcision could prevent prostate cancer - if it's performed after the age of 35.
    Wasn't this another of Morris' crusades, along with another non-doctor, Jake Waskett?

    Hank
    The good thing about these studies is they teach people to be more critical - something that is often done less when it is a study advocates like. Obviously it could be claimed that being Haitian causes less prostate cancer but when it comes to Scare Journalism and Miracle Cures, that kind of scientific thinking exits the window.
    You are joking, right?
    Wiswell's data showed that boys with foreskins were 10 times more likely to have UTIs, and increased their chances of kidney damage. The AMA and AAP changed their stance from neutral, to more favorable to cutting. No one could reproduce Wiswell's data. The AMA and AAP made their stance more neutral.
    Here it is, a long time past 1989, and Morris is quoting Wiswell.
    Krieger "showed that there is no adverse effect of circumcision on sexual function, sensitivity, or pleasure".
    How do you remove 20,000 nerves, as counted by pathologist John Taylor of the University of Manitoba, and have no lessening of pleasure? By contrast, the clitoris contains about 8,000 nerves. Nobody disputes that the clitoris shouldn't be removed, but few question removing something which has 2 1/2 times the nerves, all geared towards pleasure.
    I love the blaming of Hispanics and the defunding of circumcision by Medicaid. Since when is Medicaid supposed to pay for elective surgeries? Especially on healthy people. Who haven't consented. How about the Hispanics? Are they the reason that the circumcision rate is dropping in Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and the US?