Friday, August 14, 2009

Quack? Or not...

The day after E was born a nurse called me and said, "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" I informed her that my husband and I had decided against that procedure.

The next morning I got another phone call from the nurse who asked "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" Once again I informed her that we had decided to leave E intact.

Sunday (yes, I spent 3 days in the hospital following a vaginal birth...they were watching my blood pressure and if it hadn't behaved on that day they were going to send E home and keep me!!) I again recevied a call from the nurse asking "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" Sighing and suppressing my urge to scream, "didn't anybody read (or write in) his chart!!!", I told her 'no'.

Yesterday I took E to his pediatrician for his school checkup. He did not see an actual MD. He saw a board certified pediatric nurse practitioner with the same office we went to when we were last in Florida. The reason I am questioning her is that she mentioned 'phimosis' and said I should schedule an appointment with a urologist. She asked me if we have been stretching his foreskin. I said no.

Now I am kind of confused. Everything that I have read says that it is normal for a little boy's foreskin to still not retract at age 6 and not to worry about it. They also say not to manipulate it if it doesn't easily retract. You could hurt him and cause damage. One website said that by age 10, 80% of little boys retract and by 18 it's about 98%. I think age 6 is too early to diagnose phimosis.

My question, dear internets, should I call a urologist and waste a $40 copay or should I listen to the American Academy of Pediatrics, WebMD and Dr. Google and say that this ARNP is a quack? I know that intact little boys in this country are a bit on the rare side but she is board certified. Shouldn't she know this?

1 comment:

marna gatlin said... is a great site for information.

My son is going to be 9 and his foreskin doesn't retract at all. We took him in and they said leave it alone for a bit. If your son can't pee or if it's infected a lot then there is an issue. I bet thinks are okay -- don't worry he will find it and begin moving things around naturally in the tub or through masturbation.

The urologist we saw said that circ-ing a kid is going to hurt them the same whether he's 6 or 99, so the age old phallacy that it hurts more when they get older is crap.