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Infant & Baby Circumcision

The newborn circumcision clinic at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago offers expert surgical skills to perform the circumcision and detailed follow-up care.

Circumcision is the medical term used to describe the surgical removal of the foreskin. In most young infants, circumcision may be performed in the clinic with local anesthesia. We recommend that infant circumcision be performed by six weeks of age. However, in certain instances, infant circumcision may be performed later than this.

Before the procedure, a pediatric urologist will talk to you about your child’s medical history. They will also perform an examination to evaluate for abnormalities which could complicate the outcome of your infant’s circumcision. This evaluation may be done on the same day as the circumcision, or during a separate in-person clinic or telemedicine appointment. The results of this examination will be explained to you by your doctor.


How to Prepare for Your Appointment

Feed your infant normally on the day of the planned circumcision. Please bring extra feeds and a blanket to the visit. If your infant’s circumcision was not done due to a medical problem which is no longer a concern, please bring the appropriate clearance letter with you. You do not need to give your infant Tylenol before arriving in clinic.

Please bring the following supplies with you to the procedure:

  • Infant acetaminophen (Tylenol)
  • Extra diapers

You may choose to have the following supplies on hand at home for use after the procedure:

  • Antibiotic ointment (Bacitracin or Neosporin)
  • Bland ointment (Vaseline or Aquaphor)

Please note that we require that your infant receive Vitamin K prior to newborn circumcision. This is typically given during admission at the time of birth, unless you requested otherwise from your child’s care team.

What to Expect

Expect your circumcision appointment to last approximately 90 minutes. After you meet your doctor, they will review any medical history and examine your infant in order to assure that circumcision can be performed safely and effectively. You will be able to ask your doctor questions about the procedure and about the risks and benefits of circumcision. Your infant will be given Tylenol before the procedure. 

The circumcision will be performed in a procedure room. You will wait in a separate room near your baby. A local anesthetic will be given before the circumcision to numb the penis. After the procedure, a dressing may be applied along with antibacterial ointment. The procedure takes about 20-30 minutes.

Upon completion of the procedure, your infant will return to the examination room and you will be able to feed him. He will be monitored for about 20 minutes. Post-procedure care will also be reviewed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, we do offer counseling. Your pediatrician can also help provide information about the pros and cons of circumcision. A separate pediatric urology consultation (not a procedure appointment) should be scheduled if you are unsure whether circumcision is the best decision for your baby.

Yes. Your infant will be given Tylenol and a local anesthetic will be administered before circumcision in order to numb the penis.

We recommend that infant circumcision be performed by 6 weeks of age. In certain circumstances and in consultation with one of our specialists, circumcision may be performed after this age.

Complications from circumcision are rare but may include bleeding, infection, risk of damage to the penis and unsatisfactory cosmetic outcome which could require a surgical revision. Your doctor will review these risks with you at the time of your appointment.

Post-procedure care will be reviewed with you before leaving your visit and written instructions will be provided. If your infant has a dressing on the penis, this will be removed at home. You will be asked apply ointment to your infant’s penis with diaper changes. You can expect to have follow up with a member of the medical team within a month post-procedure.

Make an Appointment

Please call our office at 312.227.6340 for additional questions, or to schedule a circumcision appointment for your newborn with Lurie Children’s pediatric urology experts. Telemedicine (virtual) appointments are offered with Dr. Max Maizels.

Our Specialists

Edward M. Gong, MD

Edward M. Gong, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Co-Director, Fetal Urology, The Chicago Institute for Fetal Health; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Emilie K. Johnson

Emilie K. Johnson, MD, MPH

Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Bruce W. Lindgren

Bruce W. Lindgren, MD

Director of Minimally Invasive Urological Surgery; Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Dennis B. Liu, MD

Dennis B. Liu, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Max Maizels, MD

Max Maizels, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Derek Matoka, MD

Derek J. Matoka, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Catherine M. Seager

Catherine M. Seager, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Elizabeth B. Yerkes

Elizabeth B. Yerkes, MD

Attending Physician, Urology; Director of Neuro-urology; Co-Director of Reconstructive Pediatric Urology in the Division of Urology; Myles Michelon Endowed Chair in Urology; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

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