Zocdoc Answers

Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"Is it safe to be circumcised as an adult?"

ZocdocAnswersIs it safe to be circumcised as an adult?


I was never circumcised but my girlfriend wants me to have it done. I'm 24 years old and I told her that it is too late. Is it safe to have it done as an adult? Are there any health risks to having it done or not having it done?


Circumcision is not a medically necessary procedure in almost any circumstances. Reasons that parents choose to have their children circumcised tend to be cultural or religious. Infant boys who are not circumcised have a higher risk of urine infections in the first 6 months of life, but then that risk goes away. There are no real reasons to seek circumcision later in life unless it is something you desire for cultural or cosmetic reasons. In developing countries, there have been some studies showing that men who are circumcised are at lower risk of contracting HIV, but it is not clear that those studies have any meaning in a setting like the United States as long as you are careful and use protection during sexual activity. If you do wish to have a circumcision, you could set up an appointment with a urologist to discuss the issue. Circumcision in adults is more painful than in infants, however there are few other risks from the procedure. There is a slight risk of infection immediately after the procedure while the circumcision is healing which can be managed with proper wound care. Talk to your doctor if you are interested in discussing this issue more.

Need more info?

See an urologist today

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.