Article: AAP to revise circumcision statement and release it in 6-12 months - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/...iatricians.php

I am so afraid right now.

The revision is sparked, of course, by the HIV/AIDS "studies":


Quote:
"We believe when there's this kind of information coming into play - more and more evidence in various journals - we need to go back carefully and review our policies," Berkelhamer said. "We recommend things for all children when medical evidence is overwhelming compelling."

The group's policy statement carry weight. Following AAP's 1999 statement on circumcision, Medicaid programs in several states began limiting coverage of routine, non-therapeutic circumcision, one of several factors contributing to a declining circumcision rate in the United States, health care experts say.

Berkelhamer, a pediatrician in Atlanta, said the organization's researchers are in the "literature review" stage, and that it's too early to know whether they plan to endorse routine circumcision. But he wouldn't go so far as to recommend the surgery to expectant or new parents, noting that he's "not terribly uncomfortable with policy as currently written."

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#2 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is there anything we can do to influence what happens here? This has the potential to be huge....one way or the other...

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#3 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:31 PM
 
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Why is the AAP considering amputative surgery on infants as a means to lower the incidence of an STD? This is just not making any sense to me. Who the heck knows if there will be a cure in 20 years when these boys enter the "at risk" population? And why advocate an "across the board" procedure for all boys when there is no way to determine during infancy if a boy will grow up to put himself at risk? I'm confused as to why this is even on the table.

I'm hoping against hope that this goes the right way.
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#4 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:33 PM
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But he wouldn't go so far as to recommend the surgery to expectant or new parents, noting that he's "not terribly uncomfortable with policy as currently written."
That's at least semi-optimistic. The policy is not great, but it's not horrible either.
Letter writing campaign time?

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#5 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think it is no coincidence that the AAP released this press release during the same week as a flurry of articles concerning sensation loss and circ rates dropping also came out.

They need their penis coupons. God please let there be enough clear thinking individuals on the panel so that the statement at least stays how it is...

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#6 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fi. View Post
That's at least semi-optimistic. The policy is not great, but it's not horrible either.
Letter writing campaign time?
We've got to do something. I just don't know what or even who it should be directed at!

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#7 of 74 Old 06-18-2007, 11:57 PM
 
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Tell me were to write and I will.

 
SAHMlady.gifread.giflovin' trekkie.giffan intactivist.gifwinner.jpg to loveeyes.gifenergy.gifDD 10/00 & superhero.gifmoon.gifDS 10/04 ribbonpb.gifIf your ds is intact, keep him safe, visit the Case Against Circ forumnocirc.gifCirc, a personal choice, Your sonsyes.gifbrokenheart.gif11/98brokenheart.gif6/99ribbonbrown.gifanti-tobaccoribbonyellow.gifThyroid cancer survivor. With cat.gif& goldfish.gif & (Boxer)dog2.gif wishing 4 whale.gif&ribbonwhite.gifsigncirc1.gifselectivevax.gifdelayedvax.gif

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#8 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christifav View Post
Why is the AAP considering amputative surgery on infants as a means to lower the incidence of an STD? This is just not making any sense to me. Who the heck knows if there will be a cure in 20 years when these boys enter the "at risk" population? And why advocate an "across the board" procedure for all boys when there is no way to determine during infancy if a boy will grow up to put himself at risk? I'm confused as to why this is even on the table.

I'm hoping against hope that this goes the right way.
:

"Our task is not to see the future, but to enable it."
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#9 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:07 AM
 
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This is so heartbreaking. We have a deal that we won't circ our future boys as long as the AMA and AAP don't recommend it.
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#10 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:08 AM
 
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The HIV argument completely baffles me. It's not like any health worker is going to recommend anything other than condoms or abstinence to prevent it. No one is going to say, "Well, you're circumcised, so don't worry about HIV." RIC and HIV is just a ridiculous connection and a totally pointless argument IMO.
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#11 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:09 AM
 
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We MUST be able to do something! How do we find out who is on that panel and how to we contact them?

Mamma to 3! nurslings Emma (4) Daniel (3) and our new baby Beth! 10/10/09
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#12 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, so do we write to the general AAP address or maybe we can find the address of the head guy Berkelhamer? Last time there was a task force, maybe we can find out who is on the panel reviewing the statement?

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#13 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:33 AM
 
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Thinking out loud here....maybe would be best to see what NOCIRC and DOC are doing WRT this and what we folk can do to assist?

I suspect that they have all the proper channels that should be gone through and would be the best guides here.

NOCIRC
info@nocirc.org
Phone: 415-488-9883
Fax: 415-488-9660
www.nocirc.org

DOC
http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcisi...t/contact.html



- Kira
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#14 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:34 AM
 
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I have never joined a letter writing campaign. But if they are *actually* thinking of changing circ recommendations for INFANTS who don't face HIV infections, while other countries are seeing through these "studies" and openly dismissing them for the idiocy that they are, you bet your behind that I will join a letter writing campaign in a heartbeat. I cannot imagine the damage that will be done to the intactivist cause if the AAP actually recommends circ based on these flawed HIV studies.

I have to imagine that DOC or NOCIRC might be able to tell us how to get in touch with the AAP and voice our concerns.

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#15 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Kira~ View Post
Thinking out loud here....maybe would be best to see what NOCIRC and DOC are doing WRT this and what we folk can do to assist?

I suspect that they have all the proper channels that should be gone through and would be the best guides here.

NOCIRC
info@nocirc.org
Phone: 415-488-9883
Fax: 415-488-9660
www.nocirc.org

DOC
http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcisi...t/contact.html



- Kira
Good plan! SHould I just write with the link to the article and ask what to do?

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#16 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 09:36 AM
 
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Jay E. Berkelhamer, MD, FAAP
President, American Academy of Pediatrics
141 Northwest Point Blvd.
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007

* If you are a medical professional and have observed circs or dealt with complications, be sure to mention this.
* If you have a child, partner, or friend with circ complications, be sure to mention them. Example: "My son was circumcised in an Ohio hospital in 2000 and has a buried penis. He comes home from school crying because his peers tease him about it. " If it is a recent circ done in the USA be sure to mention place/date so we make the point that these complications are happening with current medical practice.
* Start your letter with "Dear sir"
* Less than one page is best, just make your point!
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#17 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 09:43 AM
 
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Thanks!
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#18 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 10:01 AM
 
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I think it's great that everyone is going to do research on how to contact the AAP and submit concerns, etc.

Remember this article says they are going to review, it doesn't mean they will change their stance uniformly. It even states that at this point they aren't changing their position. Personally I think their position now is stupid, it's like "don't ask, don't tell". They should just admit that it's barbaric and say it's unnecessary except in specific instances which cannot possibly be determined or predicted at birth.

There is also another article today, link is:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070618/...NJiHQVKDzMWM0F

Which is pretty wishy-washy but at least gets to subject going in very mainstream news outlets..
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#19 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 10:16 AM
 
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#20 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 10:19 AM
 
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Why don't they recommend removal of the labia for females as a means of preventing HIV? Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't that also decrease HIV infection (going by the theory of the supposed circ "prevention")?

- Emy . Single mom to DS nut.gif Ezra (15.12.05), angel2.gif Thames (reincarnated 18.04.08) and DD rainbow1284.gif babyf.gif Allora (11.02.11) and dog2.gif Hoppylactivist.gif  novaxnocirc.gif  waterbirth.jpg fambedsingle2.gif bfinfant.giffemalesling.GIFcd.gif

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#21 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 10:40 AM
 
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Thank you for this information. Dr. B should be getting my letter by week's end.

This makes me want to either or .
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I will definitely be writing a letter.
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#23 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 11:54 AM
 
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You know the thing is even if the point blank came out against it people would still insist on having it done. Idiots, plain idiots. The sort of idiots who say 'my son didn't feel any pain.' Until doctors start living up to the 'do no harm' part of the deal and it's made illegal then they will continue to do it.

The AAP doesn't recommend it now, but that doesn't stop people.
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#24 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 11:58 AM
 
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I sincerely hope the AAP remembers that circ has not really helped much with the AIDS problem in America so far.
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#25 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:12 PM
 
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Logically, it wouldn't make any sense for them to recommend circumcision to prevent HIV (NO ONE would go out and tell their son "go out and have all the unsafe sex you want...you are circumcized".) Especially with this study and how many inconsistencies it has (and the debates that it has sparked) But of course, here in the US, NOTHING surprises me anymore in regards to what people will justify doing/having done to their babies for the sake of "tradition".

Sometimes I am so embarassed to live here. I am sure everyone in Europe thinks its just hilarious that Americans think circumcision is the big answer to HIV, while they are intact with much lower instances of HIV infection. I just hate to be associated with the country wide idiocy associated with circumcision here.

And anyone else think they will somehow "forget" to include all the info about sensitivity lost that has come out within the last year?
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#26 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:15 PM
 
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I sincerely hope the AAP remembers that circ has not really helped much with the AIDS problem in America so far.
EXACTLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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#27 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:28 PM
 
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Ummm... if they do come out w/some "circ your kid so he doesn't get/spread AIDS" statement, wouldn't it still be smarter to come out with a "educate your son as a teenager on abstinance/safe sex/how STD's are spread?" It just seems akin to removing your daughter's cerevix so she doesn't get cervical cancer... there are other ways you can make babies these days, you know ......

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#28 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:31 PM
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I sincerely hope the AAP remembers that circ has not really helped much with the AIDS problem in America so far.
True, but, playing devil's advocate here.......

In the U.S., the majority of men who have AIDS got it from homosexual sex and/or drug use, so the circ status may not really apply as much to the current AIDS statistics.


Frankly Speaking, who used to be a very active member here and is now on another pro-intact board I visit, said that the AAP won't listen to what we have to say, unfortunately. He said that there are some members of the AAP board who are of a religious persuasion that would make them more likely to recommend circumcision.

BUT he said that circumcision is doing a free-fall in this country and will continue to do so, even if the AAP recommends it. I hope he's right on that one. Unfortunately I'm not so sure.

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#29 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:42 PM
 
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I agree that there may be physicians with vested interests or ingrained pro-circ attitudes for religious reasons, but even then, recommending routine circumcision of infants for medical reasons should be a conflict (if the information isn't there to back it up.) I guess they could want to strengthen the prevalence of circumcision or reasons that non-religious people circ, so that the culture supports it and there is less chance of legislation against it, which would be problematic for some religions. But when it comes down to information on which they base their policy statements, I'd have to say it would be really bad to make recommendations if that (protecting the religious right by perpetuating the cultural practice) is the goal. (I'm just writing in response to Frankly Speaking's thoughts.)

Bottom line, I feel fearful and annoyed and upset, but I have to feel that the studies, the problems with them, the logic (or lack of) that others point out about the STDs issue where infants are concerned, and the FACT of the sensitivity study all are worth presenting to them. I figure, if people are pointing out that they know of these factors and expect any AAP task force to consider them, won't it make it harder to ignore? I feel skeptical and fearful and still would be nervous to read the new statement, but absolutely have faith that pointing out the facts (in a letter) is an action that has some merit and worth.

In fact, when I first heard last month that the AAP was intending to review and possibly revise their policy statement, I automatically thought "Whoo boy, here comes the recommendation against ROUTINE circumcision of newborn males because of the concrete info in the sensitivity study." Then I read that the studies that were making them revisit the issue were the AIDS/HIV stuff....and got nervous.
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#30 of 74 Old 06-19-2007, 12:44 PM
 
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I posted this on the News & Current Events thread (linking to article on circ rate falling) this morning, but all the while intended to come here and see about AAP contact info, Task Force On Circumcision info, etc. Anyway, here it is:



I had seen articles mentioning that the AAP is reviewing its policy statement in light of "recent studies" and the HIV/AIDS study was mentioned, but I had assumed that the penile sensitivity study published in the British Journal of Urology, in Spring 2007, would be one of those "recent studies" reviewed, too. Especially since the current AAP policy statement DOES reference the issue of differences in sensitivity (limiting the comment to mentioning "anecdotal reports," then going right on to mention the Masters & Johnson study noting "no difference in exteroceptive and light tactile discrimination on the ventral or dorsal surfaces of the glans penis between circumcised and uncircumcised men.")

In another portion of the existing policy statement, they do acknowledge that keratinization (which is going to affect sensitivity, no matter what) occurs "on the skin of the penile shaft but not on the mucosal surface of the foreskin. One study suggests that there may be a concentration of specialized sensory cells in specific ridged areas of the foreskin but not in the skin of the penile shaft." Of course, they stop short of spelling it out any further, but that's there.

I had assumed, when I heard about the plans to review the statement, that the results of the recent sensitivity study would be considered and would be part of the new statement (especially since the current one already drops the "Masters & Johnson" name, and the results of the new study are verifiable and can be duplicated...) And I'd assumed that the flaws in the study in Africa would be sufficient for them not to claim that the results are somehow compelling.

For that matter, I'd thought that the now certain and quantified loss would necessarily trump ANY of the potential benefits suggested by circumcision, especially when the very slight rate of "potential protection" is considered. (As in penile cancer, UTIs, etc.) I mean, in the face of "do no harm," it would SEEM obvious that the reviewing physicians would (whatever their personal wishes or preferences are) realize that. Of course, I guess there's no guarantee that they're going to consider the BJU's published study. Maybe some letter-writing to the AAP's task force on circumcision is in order for people who care?
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