Einstein (Sao Paulo) 2012 Sep;10(3):342-346.
Circumcisions for medical reasons in the Brazilian public health system: epidemiology and trends.
Korkes F, Silva Ii JL Pompeo AC
To evaluate the epidemiological factors associated to medical circumcision,
based on data from the Brazilian public health system.
Using the Unified Health System public database between 1984 and 2010,
hospital admissions associated with surgical treatment of phimosis were
searched. A total of 668,818 men admitted to public hospitals who underwent
circumcision were identified and included in the present study.
A mean±standard deviation of 47.8±13.4 circumcisions/100,000 men/year was
performed through the Unified Health System for medical reasons. During the
27-year period evaluated, 1.3% of the male population required circumcision
for medical reasons. [So 98.7% of routine circumcisions are wasted on boys and men who will never need it.] Total number of circumcisions and circumcision rate
increased in childhood, declined progressively after 5 years of age and rose
again progressively after the sixth decade of life. In the regions of the
country with better access to healthcare, 5.8% of boys aged 1 to 9 years old
required circumcisions. [Or were circumcised whether they needed it or not.] From 1992 to 2010 there were 63 deaths associated
with circumcisions (mortality rate of 0.013%).
[That's one death in 7692 circumcisions. In this USA, that would amount to 156 circumcision deaths per year.]
In conclusion, yearly circumcision rates could be estimated in Brazil, and a
very low mortality rate was associated with this procedures. Circumcision is
mostly performed in children in the first decade of life and a second peak
of incidence of penile foreskin diseases occurs after the sixth decade of
life, when circumcision is progressively performed again.
[This study was circulated by Prof. Brian Morris, who presumably thinks this is an "acceptable" death rate.]