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J Midwifery Womens Health. 2001 Nov-Dec;46(6):415-22.

An evidence-based approach to male circumcision: what do we know?

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  • 1University of Pennsylvania Midwifery Program, USA.

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  • J Midwifery Womens Health 2002 Jan-Feb;47(1):following table of contents.


Midwives care for women throughout their childbearing years, guiding them through decisions made about themselves and their newborn children. The decision to circumcise a male infant depends on a number of factors, including medical, social, cultural, and religious considerations. Data surrounding medical benefits and risks of this surgery are inconsistent and, therefore, confusing. However, substantial data exist to support the conclusions that uncircumcised males have greater incidences of urinary tract infections, especially in the first 6 months of life when complications are greatest, greater incidences of ulcerative sexually transmitted infections, and increased transmission of human immunodeficiency virus. This article reviews available research on the medical benefits and risks of infant circumcision. Informed consent is essential for all parents who must make this decision.

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