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Posthitis, Balanitis, and Circumcision

BERT VORSTMAN, MD; JORGE L. LOCKHART, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1986;140(10):970. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140240016007.
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Sir.—A recent retrospective report on the frequency of foreskin problems in uncircumcised children found balanitis to be more frequent among uncircumcised children, but found that the difference was not statistically significant.1 Still, this study concludes that we should expect to see more patients with balanitis and "irritation" of the foreskin when more children are not circumcised. This conclusion is not a logical extension of the results, and the findings do not allow parents to be properly counseled on the benefits of circumcision. These results are further support for the recommendation of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Elk Grove Village, Ill, that "there are no valid medical indications for circumcision in the neonatal period."2 Even more important, circumcision for nonmedical indications may compromise successful repair of underlying penile abnormalities, which occur frequently.3

Although 80% of the world's population does not practice circumcision, the operation is done either for

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