Male Baby Circumcision: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We carry out baby circumcisions at the London Surgical Centre in the Maryam Centre in East London. Maryam centre is a flagship centre of the East London Mosque. However, London Surgical Centre is a separate independent entity.
What is a circumcision?
Circumcisions are common for baby boys in certain parts of the world. Whether you are circumcising your baby boy for religious practice or for his general health and well-being, the London Surgical Centre is here to help you through the process. We carry out circumcisions for baby boys in a sterile and safe environment, at the London Surgical Centre in Whitechapel, East London.
Infant and newborn circumcision:
Most parents tend to arrange a circumcision for their child when they are still a baby and many prefer as a newborn. This makes easier for parents to manage and causes least amount of pain or discomfort, and they are unlikely to remember the procedure ever took place.
It is crucial that baby is healthy and well before any circumcision procedure is undertaken. This will help to reduce any risks. It is generally regarded that the earlier circumcision is done the better, provided no major illness such as severe jaundice or other diseases requiring hospital admission and constant care.
Prematurity is usually not a reason to delay the procedure; however, please discuss with the doctor for body weight and other issues he may have. We reduce the dose of local anaesthetic accordingly.
No, you can do before or after. However, it is better to give couple of days’ space between two events where possible, especially if they develop temperature after the vaccinations.
Muslims and Jewish faiths usually circumcise their male children in accordance with the laws and practices of their faith, and there are also numerous health benefits for individuals that are circumcised. It is important to note that there is absolutely no basis for ‘female circumcision’ in Islam and these practices are illegal and criminal offence by law in the UK.
Other cultures also practise circumcisions for boys as part of their traditions. But it is highly advised to have the procedure carried out by a professional surgeon using local anaesthetic.
Baby circumcision Procedure
Very minimal; pain is only for 10 seconds from the local anaesthetic injection to make the area numb. We infiltrate local anaesthetic (combination of short acting lignocaine and long acting bupivacaine) injection using a tiny needle around the area before the procedure to ensure that baby is pain free. This works with immediate effect.
We do not use Emla cream routinely as pain is from fluid inflation of the tissue plane and topical agent does not work. However, if you wish to use Emla cream, please let us know in advance and you would need to apply it at least an hour before the procedure.
The most common and standard surgical technique for carrying out a circumcision on a baby is using the Plastibell (™) Circumcision Device. This is a clear plastic ring that is used for the procedure during a short 10 minute surgery, to remove the foreskin. This technique is well proven, safest and reliable over many years unlike other novice experimental technique.
Many people misunderstands that this is fully compliant with religious practice and adequate skin is not always taken. This technique is similar to the traditional “cutting and stitching”, but more comfortable and painless way of circumcision using a ring and string to cut the skin like umbilical cord (belly button) without having the need to stitch and other associated complications. Extra skin is cut with string and ring as shown below.
Plastibel ring technique:
The plastic ring usually falls off after the surgical procedure within 3-7 days. Parents are usually advised to monitor the progress of their baby, and keep the area clean.
Procedure is performed using sterile single-use disposable instruments. Plastibel ring is the best for the babies in experienced hand. Some people use other devices such as Circumplast, which has not been used long enough and widely to ensure its safety.
Home circumcision is not recommended as per regulatory bodies’ guidance and is not always safe for babies either. Many nonmedical persons may offer to do at home and they are often not registered with GMC and probably not doctors.
It depends on the age and associated medical conditions. This usually starts from £140 including consultation, medicines, 24/7 aftercare and unlimited follow ups as needed.
This varies, but usually takes 3 to 7 days for ring to fall off depending on the skin texture, age and aftercare. For newborn, ring may fall off as early as 3 days. After ring falls off, it may take another 5 to 7 days to heal completely and we advise you to apply Vaseline on the wound to facilitate the healing.
People do circumcision mainly for 4 different reasons: religious, cultural, hygienic and medical.
Boys who have been circumcised benefit from fewer infections and are at reduced risk for:
- Foreskin infections
- Urinary tract infections
- Penile cancer
- Sexually transmitted disease
- Phimosis (a condition sometimes observed in uncircumcised males which makes full and free retraction of foreskin impossible)
Simple answer is No. However, NHS may offer free circumcision if someone has medical indications to do so. This would require your GP referral to the hospital.
Complications are uncommon. However, bleeding, infection, stuck ring, swelling, redness and cosmetic deformity etc can happen and we deal with it if it happens.
During consultation and examination, doctor will notify you if this is the case. This is not an abnormality and no need to panic and this will have no bearing on his future wellbeing. However, you may have to perform pushing back exercise, one week after the ring falls off. Cosmetic look may not be good and penis may not come out unless you push it out. This usually gets better as the baby grows out, loses weight and pubic fat etc.
Once you book, you will be texted the details of instruction 3 days before the procedure for you to prepare. Once you arrive, you will have thorough consultation, and we will explain the procedure and take consent. Then we prepare the parents with emotional support as needed and the baby for the procedure. After the procedure, you are transferred to a recovery room for aftercare package and medications and discharged when parents are happy and baby remains well.
90% of babies are not irritable or in pain after the procedure. However, we provide the aftercare, medicines and other advices for those who remain unsettled.
Please call us to discuss.