The American Academy of Pediatrics has published new research that circumcision benefits outweigh risks and can help prevent the spread of diseases.
(Image source: Time Magazine ) BY CELIA MURRAY ANCHOR MEGAN MURPHY The American Academy of Pediatrics has shifted its stance on circumcision. KGO-TV explains why the AAP has changed its mind and is now encouraging the procedure. “Recent research has bolstered evidence that it reduces chances of infection with sexually spread diseases, urinary tract infections and cancer.” While the AAP has outlined the benefits, it is still avoiding fully endorsing the operation. WebMD explains the organization’s rather long-winded position. “...they stop short of recommending the surgery...for every newborn boy.... Instead, the updated policy statement advises parents to weigh the medical information along with ethical, cultural, and religious beliefs when making the decision.” As a blogger for Huffington Post notes , the topic has long been contentious, but more so now. “The academy's new policy comes as circumcision is a topic of increasing debate in the U.S., both at the research and policy levels: Medicaid programs in 18 states have stopped covering circumcision, and local governments in California have attempted to ban the procedure.” Some seem to see an added benefit to an increase in circumcisions. As NBC reports , a team from Johns Hopkins University analyzed the possible fiscal changes. “...urinary tract infections would triple and HIV rates would go up 12 percent if circumcision rates fell to 10 percent. The bill for all these extra infections? Half a billion dollars a year....Already, the decline in circumcision rates has cost $2 billion, they calculated.” The researchers have faced an early backlash. A blogger for NPR covered the reaction from Georgianne Chapin, the Executive Director of Intact America, an anti-circumcision group that has likened the procedure to genital mutilation. “Chapin and other critics argue the scientific evidence is questionable. For one thing, the studies about HIV have only been done in Africa, where AIDS is much more common among heterosexuals.” However some think that the research, which comes from Uganda is valuable and justified. NBC interviewed Dr. Nancy Snyderman about the validity of the information coming out of Africa, “...And because of their studies, because of their data, we have for the first time a real idea of what it means for uncircumcised boys and the health risks.” The latest results on the pros and cons of circumcision were published in the medical journal Pediatrics.