Should I Circumcise? The Pros and Cons of Infant Circumcision





New to the subject of infant circumcision and the benefits of the prepuce (foreskin)? The following are resources many families have found useful when looking at the subject for the first time. They are meant to be a starting point into deeper investigation and further research that is widely available today. If you only have a short period of time to spend on this topic, a blue star marks films with physicians' statements who are in practice today, as well as medical professionals' materials. If you're interested in joining in conversation with others, the following groups are safe spaces to bring up related questions: Saving Our Sons CommunityIntact: Healthy, Happy, WholeRaising BoysIt's a Boy!Peaceful Intact EducationPeaceful Parenting Community

★ Functions of the Foreskin: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/09/functions-of-foreskin-purposes-of.html

★ Foreskin and its 16+ Functions (not 'just skin'): http://www.SavingSons.org/2015/09/foreskin-and-its-16-functions-not-just.html

★ Intact vs. Circumcised: A Significant Difference in the Adult Penis: http://www.DrMomma.org/2011/08/intact-or-circumcised-significant.html

Why did circumcision start as we now know it in the U.S.? Hear from some original doctors on the matter:
A Brief History in Physicians' Own Wordshttp://www.DrMomma.org/2007/05/circumcision-brief-history-in.html
Circumcision to Reduce Men's Pleasurehttp://www.SavingSons.org/2012/07/circumcision-to-reduce-mens-sexual.html

★ Are there medical benefits to circumcision? Read national medical statements from around the world: http://www.DrMomma.org/2014/08/medical-organization-position.html

Physicians' thoughts within the medical field todayFB.com/IntactCare
• Notably, Dr. Morton Frisch: Time for U.S. Parents to Reconsider the Acceptability of Infant Male Circumcisionhttps://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/time-for-us-parents-to-reconsider-the-acceptability-of-infant-male-circumcision_b_7031972.html
• Peer reviewed research (studies published in medical journals): http://www.DrMomma.org/2007/01/circumcision-studies.html

Well researched BOOKS written on the subject:
Marked in Your Fleshhttps://amzn.to/2ONyB34
Circumcision: A Historyhttps://amzn.to/2vkxwrk
What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Circumcisionhttps://amzn.to/2O8R5d5
Doctors Re-examine Circumcisionhttps://amzn.to/2OdfSwN
Circumcision, The Hidden Traumahttps://amzn.to/2OcqWKt
Circumcision Exposedhttps://amzn.to/2viVpQ7
The Foreskin and Why You Should Keep Ithttps://amzn.to/2M4qiBl
Circumcision: A Jewish Perspectivehttps://amzn.to/2AJju7C
Celebrating Brit Shalomhttps://amzn.to/2nc0eWN

 VIDEO: Dr. Ryan McAllister Georgetown University video lecture, Elephant in the Hospital (also included on DVD in the Saving Our Sons Info Pack): http://www.library.georgetown.edu/gelardin/showcase/entries/circumcision-elephant-hospital

 VIDEO: Dr. Christopher Guest, Circumcision: The Whole Story: http://youtu.be/SeAXantm4tE

★ VIDEO: American Circumcision documentary on Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/title/81000861

VIDEO: Whose Body, Whose Rights? Award-winning circumcision documentary: http://www.SavingSons.org/2017/01/whose-body-whose-rights-circumcision.html

VIDEO: The Real Reason You're Circumcised from College Humor: Collegehumor.com/video/6966989/the-real-reason-youre-circumcised

VIDEO: Penn & Teller: Bullsh*t Circumcision (Season 3, Episode 1): https://www.bitchute.com/video/9XgdXGUaGy5H/

★ Intact Care: Drmomma.org/2009/06/how-to-care-for-intact-penis-protect.html
Circumcision Care: Nocirc.org/publish/pamphlet5.html

The two most common forms of circumcision in North American today: 
• Gomco: http://www.Savingsons.org/2011/01/neonatal-circumcision-video-for.html
• Plastibell: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/08/plastibell-infant-circumcision.html [Note that Plastibell is the type of circumcision most often mistakenly referred to as a 'no-cutting' or 'no-blood' method.]

Outcome Statistics (Circumcised vs. Intact): http://www.DrMomma.org/2010/01/cut-vs-intact-outcome-statistics.html

Men speakhttp://www.SavingSons.org/2017/04/men-speak.html | MenMatterToo.org/men
• Facebook conversations by men: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.487363627949430.115346.166998263319303

Over 250,000 men are restoring some of what was lost to circumcision. It improves sexual pleasure in a wide variety of ways. Google Foreskin Restoration and check out any of these resources: http://www.Savingsons.org/2009/10/foreskin-restoration.html

Psychology Today article collection: http://Savingsons.org/2011/10/psychology-today-circumcision-series.html

For those with older sons who were circumcised: 
Keeping Future Sons Intact Public Page: FB.com/FutureSons 
Discussion Group: FB.com/groups/FutureSons
Articles written by those with circumcised sons: http://www.DrMomma.org/2010/05/i-circumcised-my-son-healing-from.html 

What does this have to do with WOMEN? 
• Sex As Nature Intended It: SexAsNatureIntendedIt.com
  Book by same title: https://amzn.to/2AEyUde
• How Male Circumcision Impacts Your Love Life: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/10/how-male-circumcision-impacts-your-love.html
• Women's Health and Male Circumcision Resource List: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/07/how-male-circumcision-impacts-women.html

Faith Considerations on Circumcision
• Resources by/for Jews, Christians, and Muslims: http://www.DrMomma.org/2011/01/faith-considerations-on-circumcision.html
• For Jews - Intact Jewish Network
• For Muslims - Intact Muslim Network 

HIV/AIDS and the African Trials: http://www.DrMomma.org/2014/01/hiv-aids-circumcision-resources.html

50 Reasons to Leave it Alone: http://www.DrMomma.org/2010/11/50-reasons-to-leave-it-alone.html 

If you'd like to join a community of parents (many with both circumcised and intact sons) to ask questions while making your decision, you are welcome to the Intact: Healthy, Happy, Whole group. Everyone is welcome to this safe-space, non-venting community group. The Saving Our Sons Community Group is for those who are already pro-intact advocates, and families raising intact sons.



For Sharing Educational Items

★ The Info Pack (includes a DVD with several videos and full length articles); the smaller Expecting Pack; Postcards for a Friend; or have a professional exchange online correspondence via email or Facebook message by writing to SavingSons(at)gmail.com

Informational items (cards, stickers, bracelets, etc.): Etsy.com/shop/SavingOurSons

Questions? 
Please feel free to email SavingSons(at)gmail.com any time. Several clinicians volunteer time to field questions, and if we're not able to answer, we'll seek out a place to go for further information.

If you find these resources to be of use, please help support Saving Our Sons and work we do. We continue solely by volunteers' time and generosity. See current needs at: http://www.SavingSons.org/p/sponsor-son-waiting-list.html or give directly: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=VQSSUQFGLFZXQ


The Penis: Sex Education 101 with Marilyn Milos











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Foreskin and its 16+ Functions: Not 'Just Skin'




The foreskin is an organ present on all mammals from birth (male and female, human and other mammals). It serves many important purposes, and is not 'just skin.' When the foreskin is lost to infant circumcision, there are at least 16 important functions that are lost, and likely more that we have yet to fully understand.  

Frenar Band, or Ridged Band

The frenar band is a group of soft ridges near the junction of the inner and outer foreskin. This region is the primary erogenous zone of the intact male body. Loss of this delicate belt of densely innervated, sexually responsive tissue reduces the fullness and intensity of sexual response. [Source: Taylor, J. R. et al., "The Prepuce: Specialized Mucosa of the Penis and Its Loss to Circumcision," British Journal of Urology 77 (1996): 291-295.]

Mechanical Gliding Action

The foreskin's gliding action is a hallmark feature of the normal, natural, intact penis. This non-abrasive gliding of the penis in and out of its own shaft skin facilitates smooth, comfortable, pleasurable intercourse for both partners. Without this gliding action, the corona of the circumcised penis can function as a one-way valve, making artificial lubricants necessary for comfortable intercourse. [Source: P. M. Fleiss, MD, MPH, "The Case Against Circumcision," Mothering: The Magazine of Natural Family Living (Winter 1997): 36-45.]

Meissner's Corpuscles

Circumcision removes the most important sensory component of the foreskin - thousands of coiled fine-touch receptors called Meissner's corpuscles. Also lost are branches of the dorsal nerve, and 20,000+ specialized erotogenic nerve endings of several types. Together these detect subtle changes in motion and temperature, as well as fine gradations in texture. [Sources: 1. R. K. Winkelmann, "The Erogenous Zones: Their Nerve Supply and Its Significance," Proceedings of the Staff Meetings of the Mayo Clinic 34 (1959): 39-47. 2. R. K. Winkelmann, "The Cutaneous Innervation of Human Newborn Prepuce," Journal of Investigative Dermatology 26 (1956): 53-67.]

Frenulum

The frenulum is a highly erogenous V-shaped structure on the underside of the glans that tethers the foreskin. During circumcision it is frequently either amputated with the foreskin or severed, which destroys or diminishes its sexual and physiological functions. [Sources: 1. Cold, C, Taylor, J, "The Prepuce," BJU International 83, Suppl. 1, (1999): 34-44. 2. Kaplan, G.W., "Complications of Circumcision," Urologic Clinics of North America 10, 1983.]

Dartos Fascia

Circumcision removes approximately half of this temperature-sensitive smooth muscle sheath, which lies between the outer layer of skin and the corpus cavernosa. [Source: Netter, F.H., "Atlas of Human Anatomy," Second Edition (Novartis, 1997): Plates 234, 329, 338, 354, 355.]

Components of the Immune System

The soft mucosa (inner foreskin) contains its own immunological defense system which produces plasma cells. These cells secrete immunoglobulin antibodies as well as antibacterial and antiviral proteins, including the pathogen killing enzyme lysozyme. [Sources: 1. A. Ahmed and A. W. Jones, "Apocrine Cystadenoma: A Report of Two Cases Occurring on the Prepuce," British Journal of Dermatology 81 (1969): 899-901. 2. P. J. Flower et al., "An Immunopathologic Study of the Bovine Prepuce," Veterinary Pathology 20 (1983):189-202.]

Lymphatic Vessels

The loss of these vessels due to circumcision reduces the lymph flow within that part of the body's immune system. [Source: Netter, F.H., "Atlas of Human Anatomy," Second Edition (Novartis, 1997): plate 379.]

Estrogen Receptors

The presence of estrogen receptors within the foreskin has only recently been discovered. Their purpose is not yet understood and needs further study. [Source: R. Hausmann et al., "The Forensic Value of the Immunohistochemical Detection of Oestrogen Receptors in Vaginal Epithelium," International Journal of Legal Medicine 109 (1996): 10-30.]

Apocrine Glands

These glands of the inner foreskin produce pheromones - nature's powerful, silent, invisible behavioral signals to potential sexual partners. The effect of their absence on human sexuality has never been studied. [Source: A. Ahmed and A. W. Jones, "Apocrine Cystadenoma: A Report of Two Cases Occurring on the Prepuce," British Journal of Dermatology 81 (1969): 899-901.]

Sebaceous Glands

The sebaceous glands may lubricate and moisturize the foreskin and glans, which is normally a protected internal organ. Not all men have sebaceous glands on their inner foreskin. [Source: A. B. Hyman and M. H. Brownstein, "Tyson's Glands: Ectopic Sebaceous Glands and Papillomatosis Penis," Archives of Dermatology 99 (1969): 31-37.]

Langerhans Cells

These specialized epithelial cells are a component of the immune system in the penis. [Source: G. N. Weiss et al., "The Distribution and Density of Langerhans Cells in the Human Prepuce: Site of a Diminished Immune Response?" Israel Journal of Medical Sciences 29 (1993): 42-43.]

Natural Glans Coloration

The natural coloration of the glans and inner foreskin (usually hidden and only visible to others when sexually aroused) is considerably more intense than the permanently exposed and keratinized coloration of a circumcised penis. The socio-biological function of this visual stimulus has never been studied. The glans ranges from pink to red to dark purple among intact men with light skin tone, and from pinkish to mahagony to dark brown among men with dark skin tone. If circumcision is performed on an infant or young boy, the connective tissue which protectively fuses the foreskin and glans together is ripped apart. This leaves the glans raw and subject to infection, scarring, pitting, shrinkage, and eventual discoloration. Over a period of years the glans becomes keratinized, adding additional layers of tissue in order to adequately protect itself, which further contributes to discoloration. Many restoring men report dramatic changes in glans color and appearance, and that these changes closely mirror the natural coloration and smooth, glossy appearance of the glans seen in intact men. [Source: P. M. Fleiss, MD, MPH, "The Case Against Circumcision," Mothering: The Magazine of Natural Family Living (Winter 1997): 36-45.]

Length and Circumference

Circumcision removes some of the length and girth of the penis - its double-layered wrapping of loose, and usually longer, tissue is removed. A circumcised penis is truncated and thinner than it would have been if left intact. [Source: R. D. Talarico and J. E. Jasaitis, "Concealed Penis: A Complication of Neonatal Circumcision," Journal of Urology 110 (1973): 732-733.]

Blood Vessels

Several feet of blood vessels, including the frenular artery and branches of the dorsal artery, are removed in circumcision. The loss of this rich vascularization interrupts normal blood flow to the shaft and glans of the penis, damaging the natural function of the penis and altering its development. [Sources: 1. H. C. Bazett et al., "Depth, Distribution and Probable Identification in the Prepuce of Sensory End-Organs Concerned in Sensations of Temperature and Touch; Thermometric Conductivity," Archives of Neurology and Psychiatry 27 (1932): 489-517. 2. Netter, F.H., "Atlas of Human Anatomy," Second Edition (Novartis, 1997): plates 238, 239.]

Dorsal Nerves

The terminal branch of the pudendal nerve connects to the skin of the penis, the prepuce, the corpora cavernosa, and the glans. Destruction of these nerves is a rare but devastating complication of circumcision. If cut during circumcision, the top two-thirds of the penis will be almost completely without sensation. [Sources: 1. Agur, A.M.R. ed., "Grant's Atlas of Anatomy," Ninth Edition (Williams and Wilkins, 1991): 188-190. 2. Netter, F.H., "Atlas of Human Anatomy," Second Edition (Novartis, 1997): plate 380, 387.]

16+ Other Losses:

Circumcision performed during infancy disrupts the bonding process between child and mother. There are indications that the innate sense of trust in intimate human contact is inhibited or lost. It can also have significant adverse effects on neurological development and cause a host of problems with breastfeeding and attachment development.

Additionally, an infant's self-confidence and hardiness is diminished by forcing the newborn victim into a defensive psychological state of "learned helplessness" or "acquired passivity" to cope with the excruciating pain which he can neither fight nor flee.

The trauma of this early pain lowers a circumcised boy's pain threshold below that of intact boys and girls. This has been proven in a study during vaccination time. [Sources: 1. R. Goldman, Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma (Boston: Vanguard Publications, 1997), 139-175. 2. A. Taddio et al., "Effect of Neonatal Circumcision on Pain Responses during Vaccination in Boys," Lancet 345 (1995): 291-292.]

Every year some boys lose their entire penises from circumcision accidents and infections. They are then "sexually reassigned" by castration and transgender surgery, and are expected to live their lives as females. [Sources: 1. J. P. Gearhart and J. A. Rock, "Total Ablation of the Penis after Circumcision with Electrocautery: A Method of Management and Long-Term Followup," Journal of Urology 142 (1989):799-801. 2. M. Diamond and H. K. Sigmundson, "Sex Reassignment at Birth: Long-Term Review and Clinical Implications," Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine 151 (1997): 298-304.]

Every year many boys in the United States and elsewhere lose their lives as a result of circumcision - a fact that is routinely ignored or obscured. More U.S. born boys in the neonatal period of infancy die as the result of circumcision complications than from SIDS, car accidents, crib accidents, suffocation or choking. [Sources: 1. G. W. Kaplan, "Complications of Circumcision," Urologic Clinics of North America 10 (1983): 543-549. 2. R. S. Thompson, "Routine Circumcision in the Newborn: An Opposing View," Journal of Family Practice 31 (1990): 189-196.

The human foreskin represents 1/3 to 1/2 the complete penis at birth and in early childhood, and plays an important part in normal sexual functioning in adulthood.


Learn more:

National Organization of Restoring Men: The Lost List: http://www.norm.org/lost.html

Functions of the Foreskin by Drs. Fleiss and Hodges: http://www.rMomma.org/2009/09/functions-of-foreskin-purposes-of.html

The Touch Test: http://www.SavingSons.org/2014/06/fine-touch-pressure-thresholds-of-human.html

Foreskin: Sexual Functioning (CIRP): http://www.cirp.org/library/sex_function/

Restoration Resources: http://www.SavingSons.org/2009/10/foreskin-restoration.html

Saving Our Sons Community (group)



Georgetown University Lecture:
Infant Circumcision: The Elephant in the Hospital
by Dr. Ryan McAllister


An added message for physicians:



To join the MedPro advisory panel, email SavingSons@gmail.com








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Breastfeeding and Circumcision Resources


Keep calm. Latch on. And keep him INTACT.

August 1-7 is World Breastfeeding Week and is the perfect opportunity for outreach with mothers who wish to nurse their babies to be born this year. Being honest, and fully disclosing the hazards that genital cutting often poses for a breastfeeding relationship is key to parents making informed decisions for the sake of their son. Here we highlight a variety of resources that relate to the intersecting topics, as well as showcase some images that have been used during past years for awareness-raising.

Happy World Breastfeeding Week! And thank you for saving our sons. ❤

• Breastfeeding and Circumcision: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/11/breastfeeding-circumcision.html

• La Leche League: The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding on Circumcision: http://www.DrMomma.org/2012/06/womanly-art-of-breastfeeding.html

• The Effects of Circumcision on Breastfeeding: http://ww.DrMomma.org/2009/12/effects-of-circumcision-on.html

• Natural Mother Magazine publication: Circumcision Harms Breastfeeding (p. 103-107): https://issuu.com/naturalmothermagazine/docs/march_april_2015_issue


• Circumcision Increases Breastfeeding Complications: http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/11/circumcision-leads-to-breastfeeding.html

• Breastfeeding / Circumcision Info Cards to share: https://www.etsy.com/listing/496041345/breastfeeding-circumcision-info-cards?ref=shop_home_active_4

• Circumcision and Breastfeeding [Circumstitions] Circumstitions.com/Nursing.html

• Circumcision, Breastfeeding and Bonding [CIRP] Cirp.org/library/birth

• Circumcision / Breastfeeding advocacy shirts: http://madebymomma.spreadshirt.com/breastfeeding-C46979/p2

• Breastfeeding Group (with pro-intact foundation): FB.com/groups/Breastfed





There's nothing quite so yummy as warm milk from my mummy.

A successful breastfeeding relationship best begins when a newborn feels secure, comforted, and close to his mother.

circumcision harms breastfeeding




Breastfeeding awareness and advocacy t-shirts and onesies without mark-up at Made By Momma: MadeByMomma.spreadshirt.com/breastfeeding-C46979



Breastfeeding delivers the protection against urinary tract infection (UTI) that has been touted as a faulty 'benefit' of circumcision. Breastfeeding prevents UTIs - circumcision does not!


In my womb, I carried you.
With my breast, I fed you.
And with every fiber of my being,
I will protect you.


Breastfeeding is the biological norm.
So is intact foreskin!


Success at the breast starts with a peaceful beginning. 
Keep him safe and intact.


A baby belongs on a breast, and in a bed, NOT on a board.
Practice peaceful parenting - say NO to circumcision.


Breastfeeding provides him with everything he needs - nutrients, closeness, and protection against diseases and infections, including UTIs. The stress of circumcision can jeopardize your breastfeeding relationship and rob him of all these things. Reconsider, and learn more: IntactBaby.org/research


The trauma of circumcision can negatively impact his ability to breastfeed. Are you willing to sacrifice your breastfeeding relationship for an unnecessary (and harmful) surgery?


A newborn baby only has three needs: warmth, milk, comfort. Breastfeeding supplies all three. Circumcision can hinder each.


Skin to skin. Heart to heart. Only gentleness, from the start.


Breastfeeding is universally recommended by all medical and health organizations.
Routine infant circumcision is not recommended by any national health organization in the world.


"An innocent human being was solely dependent on me!" - Tichina Arnold
Breastfeeding and genital autonomy go hand-in-hand.


Breastfeeding for all. Circumcision for none.


"What I have been told is it's important to have that bonding latch right away." -Alicia Silverstone who is also pro-intact in her stance on the gentle care and raising of babies.


"While breastfeeding may not seem to be the right choice for every parent, it is the best choice for every baby." -Amy Sprangler  Being kept intact is also best for EVERY baby!


World Breastfeeding Week: Aug 1-7
ALL pediatric organizations in the world recommend breastfeeding.
NO pediatric health organization in the world recommends infant circumcision.

International Breastfeeding Symbol (copyright free):

International Genital Autonomy Symbol (copyright free): 
GenitalAutonomySymbol.org

Breastfeeding Mom's pack with intact materials available to send (directly or anonymously) at Etsy
See Etsy item description for updates on what is included in this Breastfeeding / Intact info pack.


Retired links from years past:

The Big Breastfeeding Coverup: Circumcision Censorship: http://lifesasaladbar.blogspot.com/2011/06/big-breastfeeding-cover-up-circumcision.html 


LLLI Breastfeeding / Circumcision Information Petition http://www.petitiononline.com/170211FM/petition.html

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