Does my son need circumcision?

My son's foreskin is not retractable, is it phimosis?

Actually, when your baby is born, the foreskin is attached to the glans penis, protecting the glans penis and the urethral opening from irritation by the urine. Usually after 5 years old, the adhesion will decrease and the foreskin will gradually be retractable.

Under what circumstances should my son need circumcision?

The attachment of foreskin over the glans penis is a temporarily physiological phenomenon. Unless it is for religious reason, it is uncommon for babies to be circumcised at this age. Every surgery has its own risks, such as risk from anesthesia, or surgical complications including wound infection, bleeding or urethral narrowing. Therefore, if you are considering doing circumcision for your son, please discuss it with your doctor.

For some children with frequent or recurrent urinary tract infections or balanitis, doctor may suggest them to circumcise to reduce the chance of recurrent infections.

If I try to retract the foreskin for my son everyday, will it help?

If you try to forcefully retract your son’s foreskin, the foreskin may become tightly trapped behind the glans penis and be unable to be pulled back to its normal flaccid position. This is a dangerous situation and you need to take him to the Accident and Emergency Department immediately. If you worry about your son having tight foreskin, it will be better for you to consult your doctor.

Occasionally I notice some tiny, yellowish pearl-like nodules under my son’s foreskin, what are these?

These are probably precipitates in normal urine. They will disappear after gentle cleaning. If you are in doubt, you can bring your son to visit a doctor.

How can I help my son to clean the foreskin?

You can use water to clean the penis during bathing. There is no need to rub forcefully. Gently clean the urethral opening every time you change the nappy. If he passes stool, clean the area around the penis with water or wet cotton buds.

Under what situations should my son see a doctor?

If the urethral opening or the foreskin area has redness, swelling, signs of infection or there are signs of narrowing over the urethral opening such as slow urine flow, hesitation in urine flow, ballooning of foreskin during passing urine, you need to bring your son to visit a doctor.