Circumcision scar

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Penis with a visible circumcision scar

In males who have been circumcised, the circumcision scar refers to the scar remaining after a circumcision has healed. In some cases, the scar can be darker-colored, and, in all cases, it will encircle the shaft of the penis.


The scar, which completely encircles the shaft of the penis, is located at the boundary of the shaft skin and the inner foreskin remnant, which is the portion of the foreskin that was not removed during circumcision. This foreskin remnant is preputial mucosa that lies between the glans and the circumcision scar, which results in dissimilar tissue healing together. In adolescent and adult circumcision part of the frenulum may remain intact. The foreskin remnant is dried mucosa and can often have a different color and texture than the rest of the penile skin. It can be pinkish or light-colored, and it typically becomes covered with keratin to protect it from a dry environment. Some circumcision scars result in a marked color difference on the shaft.

The characteristics of the circumcision scar often depend on the technique that was used. Open surgical techniques using sutures may cause uneven scarring where the sutures were placed. Newborn circumcisions do not require sutures and therefore may result in a fine, even scar, but may also result in adhesions and skin bridges.[1] [2] Circumcisions after the newborn period that are performed without sutures (techniques that use cyanoacrylate tissue adhesive instead of sutures and techniques like Plastibell that heal by secondary intention) often result in an even, circumferential scar.

Non-surgical foreskin restoration will eventually result in the scar being concealed within the new restored foreskin.

Problems with the scar

Pathologists Cold & Taylor (1999) report: "Histology of the male circumcision scar shows amputation neuromas, Schwann cell proliferation and the bulbous collection of variably sized neurites. Amputation neuromas do not mediate normal sensation and are notorious for generating pain."[3] Several reports of cancer forming on the circumcision scar have been published.[4] [5]

The circumcision scar may tighten up in front of the glans penis, trapping it, and cause iatrogenic secondary phimosis.[6][7]

Additional images

See also

External links

See page 100 et seq.:


  1. REFjournal Gracely-Kilgore KA. Penile adhesion: the hidden complication of circumcision. Nurse Pract. 1984; 9(5): 22-4. PMID. Retrieved 19 October 2019.
  2. REFjournal Ponsky LE, Ross JH, Knipper N, Kay R. Penile adhesions after neonatal circumcision. J Urol. 2000; PMID. Retrieved 19 October 2019.
  3. REFjournal Cold CJ, Taylor JR. The prepuce. BJU Int. 1 January 1999; 83 Suppl 1: 34-44. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 10 October 2019.
  4. REFjournal Bissada NK, Morcos RR, el-Senoussi M. Post-circumcision carcinoma of the penis. I. Clinical aspects.. J Urol. February 1986; 35(2): 282-5. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 18 October 2019.
  5. REFjournal Fetsch J, Davis CJ, Miettinen M, Sesterhenn IA. Leiomyosarcoma of the penis: a clinicopathologic study of 14 cases with review of the literature and discussion of the differential diagnosis January 2004; 28(1): 115-25. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 19 October 2019.
  6. REFjournal Redman JF, Scriber LJ, Bissada NK. Postcircumcision phimosis and its management. Clin Pediatr (Phila).. April 1975; 14(4): 407-9. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  7. REFjournal Blaylock HJ, Vemulakonda V, Ritchey ML, Ribbeck, M. Outpatient Management of Phimosis Following Newborn Circumcision. J Urol. June 2003; 159(5): 2332-4. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 26 May 2022.