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Circumcision (adult)

What is a circumcision?

A circumcision is an operation to remove the foreskin.

There are common medical reasons for needing a circumcision such as a non-retractile foreskin, balanitis xerotica obliterans (BXO), pain during sex and recurrent infections. (see fig.1)

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

If BXO is suspected, a circumcision is the only dependable way to cure the condition. For other conditions, a dorsal slit operation or a preputioplasty may be recommended.

Circumcision  

What does the operation involve?

A circumcision is usually performed under a general anaesthetic and usually takes about half an hour.

Your surgeon will remove the foreskin and seal off any small blood vessels. They will then stitch the two edges of skin together.

What complications can happen?

1. General complications of any operation

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection in the surgical wound
  • Unsightly scarring

2. Specific complications of this operation

  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Developing an ulcer at the tip of the penis
  • Narrowing of the opening of the urethra
  • Not enough foreskin is removed
  • Too much foreskin is removed
  • Damage to the urethra
  • Reduced pleasure from sex
  • Injury to the penis

How soon will I recover?

You should be able to go home the same day or the day after. The penis usually looks swollen and red for the first week. This is a normal reaction to the operation.

To start with, you should rest and wear loose underwear.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, you should ask a member of the healthcare team or your GP for advice.

Summary

A circumcision is an operation to remove the foreskin.

Paying for your operation

Circumcision (adult) costs are covered by most medical insurance policies, but please check with your insurer first. If you are paying for your own treatment the cost of the operation will be explained and confirmed in writing when you book the operation. Ask the hospital for a quote beforehand, and ensure that this includes the surgeon’s fee, the anaesthetist’s fee and the hospital charge for your procedure.

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Copyright © 2008 EIDO Healthcare Limited   The operation and treatment information on this website is produced by EIDO Healthcare Ltd and is licensed by BMI Healthcare.

The intellectual property rights to the information belong exclusively to EIDO Healthcare Limited.

You may not copy, print out, download or otherwise reproduce any of the information other than for your personal, non-commercial use.

The information should not replace advice that your relevant health professional would give you.

Acknowledgements

Author: Mr Simon Parsons DM FRCS (Gen. Surg.) and Mr Jonathan Sutcliffe FRCS

Illustrations: Hannah Ravenscroft RM

This document is intended for information purposes only and should not replace advice that your relevant health professional would give you.

 
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