The penile foreskin (Prepuce) is a fold of skin that covers the glans penis in the flaccid state. During erection of the penis the foreskin should retract to expose the glans penis. Mr Thyer may recommend circumcision to remove the foreskin in certain medical situations.

Please note, he does not perform circumcision for cosmetic or religious reasons.

Reasons in which circumcision may be recommended include:

  1. Phimosis. The foreskin is tight does not retract causing difficulty with cleanliness and sexual function
  2. Balanitis Xerotica Obliterans (BXO). A condition of unknown cause that can cause the foreskin to shrink, turn white and lose elasticity.
  3. In selected men, a circumcision can be considered where recurrent urinary infections are an issue and no other cause has been identified.
Pre operation

Ten days prior to the procedure you should notify Mr Thyer’s rooms if you are taking any blood thinning medication or you feel that the foreskin may be infected.

The procedure

On arrival at hospital you will be prepared for theatre by nursing staff. Mr Thyer will see you just prior to being taken into the operating theatre. You will have the choice of local or general anaesthetic. The procedure should take approximately 30 minutes. Mr Thyer will remove the foreskin and send it to a pathologist for examination (you may incur a fee from the pathologist). The skin will be sutured closed using dissolving sutures. A tight bandage will be applied to the penis. After the procedure you will be checked by the nurse to ensure there is no bleeding and that you are able to urinate. You will be discharged home after a few hours.

Risks
  • Bleeding. The penis is a highly vascular organ and we do occasionally see bleeding after circumcision. Very rarely a readmission to hospital may be required to control bleeding.
  • Infection. Wound infection is rare but if it does happen a course of oral antibiotics is usually sufficient.
  • Injury to urethra. A recognised but very rare complication of circumcision.
  • Reduced sensation of the glans penis. The foreskin’s function is to protect the glans penis and maintain its sensitivity. By removing the foreskin the glans penis will naturally lose some of its sensitivity.
  • Removal of too much or too little skin. Mr Thyer will always attempt to remove the right length of skin to achieve the desired outcome and a good cosmetic result. In situations with difficult anatomy, Mr Thyer will err on the side of caution and remove less skin as more skin can always be removed in future if required. Removing too much skin is much more difficult to correct and would require input from a plastic surgeon.
  • Wound dehiscence (coming apart). Rarely the wound may come apart particularly if there is a wound infection or if sexual intercourse/masturbation is attempted before the required time.
  • There are risks with any general anaesthetic which are very rare including blood clots, heart or lung problems and adverse drug reactions. The anaesthetist will discuss these with you at the time of the procedure.
Follow up

You can remove the bandage around the penis yourself 2 days after the procedure. Mr Thyer’s rooms will contact you to arrange a follow up 8 weeks after the circumcision to check your recovery and pathology. You should rest, avoid heavy lifting or exertion for 1 week following the circumcision. Sexual intercourse and masturbation should be avoided for 6 weeks following the procedure.

When to contact Mr Thyer

Following the procedure, you should contact Mr Thyer if you:

  • Have a fever over 38 Degrees
  • Develop significant and worsening penile swelling
  • Have bleeding from the wound that does not settle with gentle pressure
  • Have increasing redness or pus coming from the wound
  • Have not received a follow up appointment
  • You can contact Mr Thyer via his rooms during working hours or after hours via the after hours nurse at Hollywood Hospital on (08) 9346 6000.

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