The removal of all or part of the foreskin of the penis.
Often circumcision is done electively at birth to promote good hygiene. In older boys and men it is most commonly done when the foreskin becomes too tight to be drawn back over the glans of the penis. This condition is called phimosis.
For older boys and men this procedure is usually done under a general anesthetic. An incision is made in the foreskin just below the glans of the penis. The excess skin is removed and the remainder of the skin is sutured to the skin just below the glans. The sutures will dissolve over the next 1-2 weeks as the skin heals. Local anesthetic is used around the suture site to minimize the discomfort while the patient is waking up. The local anesthetic will wear off in 2 – 4 hours and oral pain medication is used from then on.
You may return to your normal diet within 24 hours following surgery. You may note some mild nausea and possibly vomiting the first 6-8 hours following surgery. This is usually due to the side effects of the anesthesia and will subside fairly quickly. Clear liquids are suggested with a very light meal the first evening following surgery.
Your physical activity should be restricted the first 48 hours. During this time you should remain relatively inactive, moving only when necessary. During the first few days following your surgery you should avoid lifting heavy objects (anything greater than fifteen pounds), and avoid strenuous exercise. If you are employed, ask us specifically about restrictions for both home and work. We will write a note to your employer if needed.
In most cases your incision will have multiple sutures running along the course of your incision. Expect some redness around the sutures. If there is generalized redness, especially with increasing pain or swelling, let us know. The penis will very likely get black and blue as blood spreads in the tissue. Sometimes the whole penis will turn colors. Black and blue is followed by a yellow and brown color. In time, all coloration will go away.
You may shower 48 hours after surgery. Tub bathing should be restricted until after the sutures are removed and the wound has healed. If your incision is draining after the sutures are out, do not sit in a bath without our approval.
You will be sent home with some type of pain medication. If the pain is not too severe, you may take either Tylenol® (acetaminophen) or Advil® (ibuprophen), which contain no narcotic agents and have fewer side effects. If the pain medication you receive does not control the pain, please let us know. Some narcotic pain medications cannot be given or refilled by a phone call to the pharmacy.
Problems you should report to your urologist:
- Fever of 100.5º F
- Moderate to severe swelling under the skin incision or involving the penis
- Drug reactions such as hives, rash, nausea or vomiting