Personal Reasons for Circumcision
Many males who are circumcised had the procedure done when they were infants, following a choice made by their parents. There are, of course, also some men who choose to be circumcised when they are older. In both cases, the most common reasons for circumcision are similar. "It's almost always the patient's preference," says Dr. David Cornell, a urologist in Atlanta who specializes in adult circumcision. These preferences can stem from various religious, ethical, and social beliefs in addition to aesthetic opinions.
Dr. Thomas F. Kolon, a pediatric urologist at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, says that personal and family preferences are also the top reasons why parents circumcise their child and why young men seek the procedure for themselves.
For people who decide not to circumcise, personal preference plays a similar role but the main deterrent is often the nature of the procedure. Although low-risk, circumcision is a type of surgery and is not a decision people take lightly. "For the family, the most common reason for not circumcising is that they just didn't want to do the surgery," says Kolon. Circumcisions rarely result in problems (this is true for infants and adults) but it does happen. Infection can occur or the baby may have an unknown bleeding problem or a reaction to the local anesthetic. Understanding these potential issues is a crucial factor in this decision.