Circumcision is surgery to remove the foreskin. Circumcision is performed for two principle reasons:
- The foreskin is too tight (Phimosis). Phimosis can cause difficulties with passing urine and with intercourse.
- Recurrent infections of the foreskin or head of the penis.
Circumcision can be performed under a local anaesthetic or a general anaesthetic. In a local anaesthetic procedure the anaesthetic is injected into the skin around the base of the penis resulting in anaesthesia of the entire penis. The local anaesthetic injection is uncomfortable for 2 minutes. Following foreskin removal the small arteries and veins that have been cut are sealed with an electrocautery device then stitches placed to close the skin. Dissolving sutures are used, these fall out within six weeks of surgery. For a general anaesthetic procedure you should have nil by mouth for 6 hours prior to surgery. You should be able to head home later the same day; someone else will need to drive you home.
Pain is minimal following circumcision. The head of the penis will be quite sensitive for several weeks. Regular paracetamol and ibuprofen are prescribed to minimize any pain. Chloromycetin ointment is applied to the penis twice daily. Prolonged bathing needs to be avoided for the first week in order to prevent sutures falling out prematurely. Sexual intercourse will be able to be resumed after 4-6 weeks.
Circumcision is usually a routine and safe procedure. Rarely there may be problems with post-operative bleeding or wound infection. If you have any concerns then please contact our office.
Temporary penile swelling and bruising is normal.
There may be a small amount of bleeding that appears between the stitches - this is normal and can be controlled by applying a dressing and squeezing for ten minutes.
Return to Work
You can plan to return to a sedentary job within two days. Vigorous exercise needs to be avoided for two weeks.