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The Time To Rethink Male Circumcision Is Now, Group Says In Launching www.intactamerica.org
Date:6/25/2009

xual transmission of HIV remains abstinence or use of a condom."

Approximately 75% of the world's men are not circumcised and remain intact throughout their lives. Even in America, the circumcision rate has dropped from 85 percent to under 60 percent as parents learn facts that have long gone unexamined. Intact America is promoting awareness of the male foreskin's value as a normal, sensitive and functional body part, protecting the penis from injury and contamination, and playing a role in sexual pleasure due to its specialized nerve endings and lubricating function.

Doctors began routinely circumcising infant boys late in the 19th century to combat alleged evils linked to masturbation. Claims that circumcision prevents various diseases -- including, recently, sexually transmitted diseases -- have been found to be mistaken or exaggerated.

Most circumcisions, which take up to 15 minutes, involve strapping an infant to a molded board. In some cases, an analgesic is applied to the pubic area, but many are performed without pain control. The foreskin is forcibly separated from the head of the penis with a metal instrument, and then cut off.

In addition to pain and the wound's exposure to urine and feces contamination, complications include abnormal bleeding, infection, scarring from removing too much skin or, in rare cases, removal or loss of the entire penis. A family in Georgia recently won a $2.3 million judgment after a botched circumcision removed a third of their son's healthy penis. More than 100 deaths annually are linked to circumcision complications.

No professional medical authority recommends routine circumcision, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, which says any benefits are insufficient to justify recommending it. Sixteen states refuse Medicaid coverage of non-medically-necessary circumcisions. Nationally, annual costs related to circumcision exceed $1 billi
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SOURCE Intact America
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