I've got a live one here.... (doctor re-education) - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 5 Old 07-26-2007, 01:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Met with a great doctor for my new daughter and brought up intactness/retraction issues.

So, he's pro-intact but was taught to retract, gently, to look for infections under the foreskin...but.... I REALLY think he can be open to new ideas.

I told him a few thoughts, basically 1- that gently should be done by the person that can interpret the gentleness 2- that till the foreskin is fully retractable the glans is essentially and internal organ and should be considered 'internal' and 3- that infections would show themselves externally, and that if a boy is peeing and not infected what??? are they looking for?

Anyways, it was a rather uncomfortable subject, but I did okay, and he did say he'd be willing to look at my info ( I told him I'd like to bringsomething that shows why I feel so strongly about this), so I'm keeping appt. in 1 month for our daughter.

He also said that he'd take a hands off approach if I requested it.

any thoughts for a coherent researched response...??? My hope is that he'll just take alook on his own and already have a changed mind when I get there, but I want to come prepared...

Also, I did mention that I know other parents that are looking for another doctor like him, but that I wouldn'tfeel comfortable coming there or recommending him if this issue wasn't resolved... saying that he would just not do that if I requested it was not resolving it sufficiently for me.

Oh, he's a family practice doc.


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#2 of 5 Old 07-26-2007, 09:36 PM
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How about these:

1) Does he open up girls' genitals to check for infections? What makes him think that the intact penis is more likely to become infected than girls' genitals? What infections does he think he'll be able to diagnose by sight without taking a culture?

2) Sources on intact care/retraction:




You should also send him to www.cirp.org and have him read up on the foreskin. Lots of great published papers there.

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#3 of 5 Old 07-26-2007, 11:49 PM
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Give him some handouts and papers from credible medical sources at your next visit and chat about it. I think you should be proactive about getting the info into his hands for review.

Good luck!
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#4 of 5 Old 08-15-2007, 12:38 AM - Thread Starter
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ok, i've been working on this... I would request permission to use the information from the post on the medical texts... I linked to that information

Comments... suggestions...

Also, anyone be willing to point out some threads where a doctor gently retracted during an exam and a problem was observed after the fact. I know we've had them, but I'm not having any luck pulling the threads.... And if it is your thread, can I pull the information out anonomously?


Why I think retraction of the foreskin is unnecessary
From a parent’s perspective

#1: What are you looking for that wouldn't show externally? If there is a problem a problem should be detected EXTERNALLY, such as external signs of infection or difficulty peeing. Statistically, problems of the foreskin are so rare that examination seems likely to be a waste of time and only perpetuates myths about the foreskin being problematic, unhygienic, or ‘needing’ circumcision.

#2. The AAP clearly states the foreskin should not be retracted. If done before it is ready it may “severely harm the penis and cause pain, bleeding and tears”.

#3: The glans should be considered INTERNAL till retractable. After retraction the boy/man can be asked to retract the foreskin himself for an exam, if necessary.

#4 It is impossible for another person to determine how 'gently' they are and that for some boys even being 'gentle' could cause a small tear. A small tear can lead to infection or further problems. Perhaps this is why American’s have seen an inordinate number of foreskin ‘problems’ when compared to intact cultures.

#5. Consider the American culture of circumcision when examining the issue… Not long ago the medical premise was that the foreskin needed to be circumcised, was problematic, unhygienic and required extra ‘attention’. Is the notion of foreskin examination a leftover from this era?

(insert examples here of retraction)

Medical Information:

“Most boys will be able to retract their foreskins by the time they are 5 years old, yet others will not be able to until the teenage years. As a boy becomes more aware of his body, he will most likely discover how to retract his own foreskin. But foreskin retraction should never be forced. Until separation occurs, do not try to pull the foreskin back — especially an infant's. Forcing the foreskin to retract before it is ready may severely harm the penis and cause pain, bleeding and tears in the skin.”

Source: http://www.medem.com/search/article_..._typ=NAV_SERCH

The following information compiled by.John Geisheker, J.D., LL.M., General Counsel, Ex.Director, DOC from:
(use the section on the medical texts... need to get permission first)

If possible... medical text example from a intact-norm culture

Other Information
“The tightness of the foreskin is a safety mechanism that protects the glans and urethra from direct exposure to contaminants and germs. The tight foreskin also keeps the boy's glans warm, clean, and moist, and when he is an adult, it will give him pleasure. As long as your son can urinate, he is perfectly normal. There is no age by which a child's foreskin must be retractable. Do not let your doctor or anyone try to retract your child's foreskin. Optimal hygiene of the penis demands that the foreskin of infants and children be left alone. Premature retraction rips the skin of the penis open and causes your child extreme pain. There is no legitimate medical justification for retraction. The child's discomfort is proof of that.”
Protect Your Uncircumcised Son: Expert Medical Advice for Parents
By Paul M. Fleiss
Mothering Issue 103, November/December 103

Is any special care required for my intact son?
Your son's natural penis needs no special care. During the first few years of life, the inside fold of his foreskin is attached to his glans, very much the way the eyelids of a newborn kitten are sealed closed. The tissue that connects these two surfaces dissolves naturally over time -- a process that should never be hurried. The foreskin should never be retracted by force….
As a young boy, you'll notice that your son will pull his foreskin outward. This is normal and natural and no cause for concern; he won't hurt himself. The first person to retract your son's foreskin should be the child himself. Make sure his pediatrician understands that you do not want his penis touched or his foreskin retracted, and then watch closely to be sure your instructions are followed. Many doctors do not understand how to care for an intact penis because they weren't provided with this information in medical school….
The white emollient under the foreskin is called smegma. All mammals have this beneficial, necessary substance. Smegma moisturizes the glans and keeps it smooth, soft, and supple. Its antibacterial and antiviral properties keep the penis clean and healthy.
Ask the Experts: Marilyn Milos

“Avoidance of premature retraction.
Care-givers and healthcare providers must be careful to avoid premature retraction of the foreskin, which is contrary to medical recommendations, painful, traumatic, tears the attachment points (synechiae), may cause infection, is likely to generate medico-legal problems, and may cause paraphimosis, with the tight foreskin acting like a tourniquet. The first person to retract the boy’s foreskin should be the boy himself.3”
Doctors Opposing Circumcison

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#5 of 5 Old 08-15-2007, 06:04 PM
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Looks good. I hope he is willing to learn.

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