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From the English Wikipedia:

A mohel (Hebrew מוֹהֵל moˈhel, Ashkenazi pronunciation ˈmɔɪ.əl, plural: מוֹהֲלִים mohalim mo.haˈlim, מוֹהֲלָא mohala, "circumciser") is a Jewish person trained in the practice of brit milah, the "covenant of circumcision."

Under Jewish law, a mohel must draw blood from the circumcision wound. Most mohels do it by hand with a suction device, but some Orthodox groups use their mouth to draw blood after cutting the foreskin.[1][2]

Holt (1913) reported tubercular mohels were transmitting tuberculosis to infant boys.[3]

The ancient practice (called Metzitzah b'peh) infects baby boys with herpes.[4][5] The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a warning in 2012 about the health implications of this practice, citing 11 cases of neonatal HSV and two recorded fatalities.[6]

A 2013 review of cases of neonatal Herpes infections in Israel identified ritual circumcision as the source of HSV-1 transmission in 31.8% of the cases.[7]

Urinary tract infection (UTI) is associated with ritual circumcision by a mohel.[8]

Four New York baby boys have contracted herpes from the mohel in six months.[9]

See also


  1. REFjournal Hartog K. Death spotlights old circumcision rite. 17 February 2005; Retrieved 2 February 2015.
  2. REFweb (2 February 2005). Rabbi probed for circumcised infants' herpes, Retrieved 2 February 2015.
  3. REFjournal Holt LE. Tuberculosis acquired through ritual circumcision. JAMA. 12 July 1913; 61(2): 99-102. DOI. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  4. REFjournal Distel R, Hofer V, Bogger-Goren S, Shalit I, Garty BZ. Primary genital herpes simplex infection associated with Jewish ritual circumcision. Isr Med Assoc J. 2003; 5: 893–894. PMID. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  5. REFjournal Penile herpes simplex virus type 1 infection presenting two and a half years after Jewish ritual circumcision of an infant. Sex Transm Dis. June 2013; 40(6): 516-517. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  6. REFjournal Baum SG. (CDC) Neonatal Herpes Simplex Virus Infection Following Jewish Ritual Circumcisions that Included Direct Orogenital Suction — New York City, 2000–2011. Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 8 June 2012; 61: 405–409. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  7. REFjournal Koren A, et al. Neonatal Herpes Simplex virus infections in Israel PDF. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2013; 32: 120-123. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  8. REFjournal Amir J, et al. Circumcision and Urinary Tract Infections in Infants. Am J Dis Child. 1986; 140: 1092.
  9. REFnews Oster, Marcy (20 February 2020)."4 NY babies get herpes from Jewish circumcision rite in past 6 months", The Times of Israel. Retrieved 12 April 2020.