The Surgeon and The Consultant: A Circumcision Conversation

By John Trainer, M.D.
Read more from Dr. Trainer at FB.com/Jet3MD or his practice profile.


Imagine a conversation in the doctors' lounge...

Surgeon: Hey, can you do a surgical clearance for me?

Consultant: Tell me about the case.

S: Well the lawyers are all in a tizzy, because he can’t consent. They wanna make sure all the Ts are crossed and all.

C: And he can’t consent because…?

S: Well he can’t talk. Not even sure he knows English. I only admitted him yesterday. It’s okay though, he has a medical surrogate -- two in fact. They're both on board.

C: What’s his medical status like? 

S: Among other things, patients like him have trouble clotting their blood. I didn’t do any labs, but I gave him some vitamin K. Y’know to shore that up. 

C: I see… 

S: And he just had a massive body fluid exposure. And even though the source was really tested and tested, I gave him a vaccine against Hep B. Just for good measure. 

C: Okaaay… 

S: Well he’s been through a lot. Yesterday his lungs were full of fluid… 

C: (surprised) WHAT? 

S: It’s okay. His lungs were replaced by extracorporeal support. For about 40 weeks. He weaned okay after his intra-cardiac shunt was fixed.

C: (concerned) Again, WHAT!?! 

S: (moving on) So, um, the surrogates are in a hurry for me to discharge the patient. Can you get up there kinda quick? 

C: What’s the hurry? Is this some kinda urgent procedure? 

S: Umm, no. It’s mostly elective. Even considered cosmetic. But the CDC just said it can prevent problems in approximately 16 to18 years. 

C: (interrupting now) And you need to do this today because…? 

S: Well if we don’t do it today, the insurance company won’t pay for it. And that would make the surrogates mad. Then they would have to pay for it. 

C: (walking away, shaking his head)

Original post on Facebook


Related Resources: 

Medical Professionals for Genital Autonomy: www.FB.com/IntactCare

Brief comment on the proposed guidelines concerning male circumcision to be issued by the CDC: https://www.academia.edu/9603843/Brief_comment_on_the_proposed_guidelines_concerning_male_circumcision_to_be_issued_by_the_CDC

The Culture Behind the CDC's New Proposal (Dr. Carmack): http://www.adriennecarmack.com/the-culture-behind-the-cdcs-new-proposal

CDC Response Campaign: https://www.facebook.com/events/290589301151865/

CDC 'Got Ethics?' Photo Campaign: https://www.facebook.com/events/369510376550319/

Respond directly to the CDC at: http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=CDC-2014-0012-0001

Responses to the AAP (whose 2012 statement is overwhelmingly similar to the CDC's proposed statement) - bottom of page: http://www.drmomma.org/2012/08/aap-circumcision-policy-statement.html

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