Tuesday, February 02, 2010
New Meta-Analysis Study Concludes Circumcision Does Much Harm, No Good
“Current evidence fails to recommend widespread neonatal circumcision,” state the authors of a new meta-analysis study in the Annals of Family Medicine that looked into 1200 circumcision studies and randomized controlled trials. (1)
The authors concluded that circumcision as a preventative for HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases in developed countries “remains uncertain,” and that using male genital cutting in an attempt to curtail any disease is highly unreliable. The report also states that "current evidence fails to recommend neonatal circumcision."
We've known these 'new findings' to be the case for years. Jewish filmmaker, Ungar-Sargon, interviews experts in the field who detail these same results in his recent film, CUT: Slicing Through the Myths of Circumcision. Any scholarly book or journal article on the subject will dive into these common misconceptions with a fair amount of research and empirical backing. What the Annals of Family Medicine have highlighted - that male genital cutting does no good, but does do a lot of harm, to both babies and adults, is nothing ground breaking. However, it may be possible that with this large meta-analysis study, we will finally start to see some valid media coverage in the United States as well. Maybe?!
The study concludes with authors making the unquestionable analysis based on data that male circumcision has no benefits, and yet the risks and disadvantages remain. Unfortunately, the authors failed to follow through with this finding to make a clear statement advocating for a complete and immediate end to all forms of genital cutting. Hopefully, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) will include this meta-analysis in their review for upcoming circumcision policy review, and speak out more strongly and accurately against the damaging practice of MGM.
For more on male circumcision, see resources currently available.
1) Perera CL, Bridgewater FHG, Thavaneswaran P, Maddern GJ. "Safety and efficacy of nontherapeutic male circumcision: A systematic review." Annals of Family Medicine. 2010;8(1):64-72.