Circumcision in day surgery (2119)

Key points below

What is a circumcision?

Surgery to remove the foreskin of a male’s penis is called a circumcision.

Why does my child need this surgery?

There are many reasons for circumcision.  The most common reasons are:

What happens on the day of surgery?

What happens after the surgery?

Day after surgery

The pain medicine from the shot will wear off after several hours.  You will be given a prescription for pain medicine.  Give this medicine to help with pain for the first 1 to 2 days.  After that Tylenol® or Ibuprofen (like Advil®, Motrin®) can be used to help with pain. 
At first your child will slow down his activity.  He probably will want to play quietly.  After the second day he may get into the shower or sponge bath and after 1 week he may take a bath.

After three days

 Your child may want to be more active than he should be.  The wounds are very fragile and can still be harmed.  Limit your child to quiet play for the first 1 to 2 weeks after surgery. This includes no straddle toys or sports.  Your child’s surgeon will tell you how long to wait until normal play and activity is allowed.
Your child should be able to return to school/day care after 5 days.
If the dressing is not off in a week you may gently take it off.  You may need to soak your son in the tub for 10 to 15 minutes to get the dressing off.  If it falls off before that, don’t worry.    


Problems are uncommon but may include:


Your surgeon will tell you when he wants to see your child back for follow-up.


Call your child’s doctor, nurse, or clinic if you have any questions or concerns or if your child has:

  • A lot of bleeding.  Minor spotting or blood under the dressing is common. Any type of continual dripping or oozing is a concern. Immediately put pressure on the area that is bleeding and hold for several minutes.  If this continues, you must call the doctor.
  • Swelling, redness, or bruising that is not minor in nature.  Call if it does not look right.  If it was healing well and then starts to get redder, swollen, or more tender you should call.
  • An unexplained fever that does not go away or the wound looks infected.  If it is healing nicely and there is a fever that does not go away, call your pediatrician or family doctor.
  • Special health care needs that were not covered by this information.