MEDICAL REASONS TO GO FOR CIRCUMCISION
Men in Singapore are not routinely circumcised, except those who undergo circumcision because of religion.
Most uncircumcised men do not have any problems. However a small proportion may be recommended to go for circumcision to treat their medical condition.
The following are common medical conditions which can be treated with circumcision:
- Tight foreskin (phimosis). When a foreskin is tight, it cannot be pulled back to expose the head of the penis. It is normal for a baby to have a tight foreskin; most of the time the foreskin naturally separates from the head of the penis as the child grows up. In some men, the foreskin fails to separate from the head of the penis and remains tight. In other cases, a tight foreskin is the result of scarring from foreskin infection or injury.A tight foreskin may not cause any problem, on the other hand it can cause discomfort and tearing of the skin, especially during erection or sexual intercourse.Rarely, tight foreskin may become stuck behind the head of the penis, if the foreskin is forcefully pulled back. This is an emergency situation and requires immediate release of the tight foreskin, and a circumcision later on.
- Recurrent foreskin infections or tears. If the foreskin repeatedly gets infected, going for circumcision would prevent further infections from occurring.
For an overview of the circumcision procedure, please click on the link below:
DOES CIRCUMCISION REDUCE THE RISK OF A MAN ACQUIRING HIV INFECTION?
There is no clear answer to this question. Although studies conducted in sub-Saharan Africa in the early 2000s (where there was a high rate of HIV infection) had showed that circumcision significantly reduced the risk of a man acquiring HIV infection, it is not clear if this applies to men living in countries with lower rates of infection, such as Singapore. A recent study conducted in Canada did not find any association between circumcision and risk of HIV. Men who are circumcised should not be given a false sense of security that they are protected from HIV infection.