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Trauma is defined as physical injury or psychological or emotional damage.[1]

Physical trauma

Physical trauma is any injury caused by a mechanical or physical agent.[1]

Psychic trauma

Psychic trauma is a psychologically upsetting experience that produces an emotional or mental disorder or otherwise has lasting negative effects on a person's thoughts, feelings, or behavior.[1]

Circumcision trauma

Circumcision trauma includes both physical trauma and psychic trauma.[2]

Physical circumcision trauma

Circumcision, more properly described as posthectomy, is the surgical excision and amputation of the foreskin of the penis, which permanently removes a significant portion of the epithelium of the penis and destroys the significant and important protective, immunological, sexual, and sensory physiological functions of that structure, and leaves the patient permanently and irreversibly impaired by the loss of those functions.[3]

Results of physical circumcision trauma

Results of physical trauma include:

Psychic circumcision trauma

The medical community has been slow to recognize the trauma of circumcision.[4]

Although a circumcision may be performed at any age, circumcisions are most commonly performed on newborn boys in the first month of life outside of the mother's womb. At that tender age general anesthesia is too dangerous to administer, so newborn boys receive only minimal pain relief at best and, in many cases, none at all.

Circumcised boys had a higher pain response at time of vaccination six months later as compared with intact boys,[5][6] showing that the nervous system had been permanently sensitized to heightened pain sensation.

Taddio et al. (1997) concluded:

Although postsurgical central sensitisation (allodynia and hyperalgesia) can extend to sites of the body distal from the wound, suggesting a supraspinal effect, the long-term consequences of surgery done without anaesthesia are likely to include post-traumatic stress as well as pain. It is, therefore, possible that the greater vaccination response in the infants circumcised without anaesthesia may represent an infant analogue of a post-traumatic stress disorder triggered by a traumatic and painful event and re-experienced under similar circumstances of pain during vaccination.
– Taddio et al. (1997)[6]

Results of psychic circumcision trauma

Results of psychic circumcision trauma include:

See also

External links


  1. a b c REFweb (2003). Trauma, The Free Medical Dictionary by Farlex. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  2. REFjournal Boyle GJ, Goldman R, Svoboda JS, Fernandez E. Male Circumcision: Pain, Trauma and Psychosexual Sequelae. Journal of Health Psychology. 2002; 7(3): 329-43. DOI. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  3. REFjournal Cold CJ, Taylor JR. The prepuce. BJU Int. January 1999; 83, Suppl. 1: 34-44. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  4. REFjournal Goldman R. The psychological impact of circumcision. BJU Int. 1 January 1999; 83 Suppl. 1: 93-103. PMID. DOI. Retrieved 14 November 2022.
  5. REFjournal Taddio A, Goldbach M, Ipp M, Stevens B, Koren G. Effect of neonatal circumcision on pain responses during vaccination in boys. Lancet. 1995; 345: 291-292. PMC. DOI. Retrieved 15 November 2022.
  6. a b REFjournal Taddio A, Katz J, Ilersich AL, Koren G. Effect of neonatal circumcision on pain response during subsequent routine vaccination. Lancet. 1 March 1997; 349: 599-603. PMC. DOI. Retrieved 15 November 2022.