Sunday, May 31, 2009

Music Soothes Circumcision of Infants

When I was circumcised at birth in the 1980s, nobody bothered with any kind of pain relief like many docs use today. Personally, I think it's a waste of time and money, but if it helps parents feel better, go for it. My own view is that whatever pain there is, if any, it's momentary, and most of us circumcised males never remember it anyways.

Now there's another study that suggests that playing music during newborn circumcision soothes the child. Great, if it works. There's no real way to measure pain in an infant anyways, as increased heart beats and breathing would be natural with any snip, snip. Most of this "pain" talk comes from the anti-circs who want us to feel like we are murdering our own kids when we give them the life protection of a clean-cut penis. I've heard the foreskin lovers have gone so far as to dub in shrieks and wails to medical videos of newborn circumcisions. Just another form of photo-shopping.

When it comes to music, hey if it makes the parents feel better, again, be my guest. I don't think the kid cares at all about it, any more than they do about pain meds. Boys have been circumcised for thousands of years, and the old-fashioned ways still work for me. Here's a clip from the article. Please comment below.

"Music Soothes Circumcision Pain"

"Music may reduce pain for babies during certain procedures, research suggests"

Posted May 28, 2009

By LiveScience Staff, LiveScience

"Music may help ease pain and provide therapeutic benefits for babies undergoing common medical procedures, including circumcision, according to new research.

"Neonatal units are increasingly using music as a way to manage pain for babies during routine practices. It is thought that playing music helps calm babies and stabilize some of their vital functions. However, past research has not been strong enough to back up these claims.

"To evaluate music's effects on infants, scientists from the University of Alberta in Canada reviewed nine previous studies published between 1989 and 2006, which included both premature and full-term babies.

"It was hard to draw an absolute conclusion from these trials because they included different study populations that were tested in different ways, and some of the trials were not set up optimally. However, the Alberta researchers found very preliminary evidence that music has a beneficial effect during certain procedures, such as blood sampling and circumcision.

"One study, which the researchers rated as high quality, looked at the effect of lullabies and nursery rhymes during circumcision. The results showed that playing music did help lower pain and prevent the babies' heart rates from increasing."


  1. I agree with you that anesthetic for newborn circumcision is a waste of time and money. Circumcisions have been successfully performed for literally thousands of years without it. Sure circumcision is painful, but so is getting an immunization, blood tests, and piercings; no one gets anesthetics for these things nor should they.

    Our society is getting very soft these days. We do everything to eradicate even the mildest discomfort, even if that means shirking our responsibilities (like circumcising our newborn boys). Pain is a fact of life, and for males, circumcision pain is a fact of life too, just as pain is for women during childbirth. Males, of course, don't experience chilbirth and the pain associated with it, but we do experience the pain of circumcision - however minor this may be in comparison. Males circumcised in infancy are particularly fortunate, as they don't remember their pain as women do when giving birth.

    While it's understandable for new parents to not want to see their newborn son in pain, they are doing him a huge disservice if they neglect to circumcise at birth. The brief, even if as some say significant, pain of this highly beneficial procedure is small potatoes compared to the pain he would experience by delaying the circumcision until he's older, when the operation is more complex and therefore much more painful.

    Somehow I doubt that playing music during any surgical procedure does much, if anything, to reduce pain. But if it encourages more people to do infant circumcisions, then bring out the tunes!

    btw, thank you for posting all the interesting information on your excellent blog. Very informative!

  2. How to give men a violent dislike for music... Remember "A Clockwork Orange"?

  3. Sam, thanks for your kind comments. It's hard to know whether a pro-circ blog is appreciated, since the anti-circs seem to dominate the internet.

    Looks like we agree about the waste of pain meds and music when it comes to newborn circumcisions. But if today's parents want to believe it helps, then crank up the IPOD.

    As usual, I don't know what the hell Hugh7 is talking about, but he's one of the anti-circs that posts here -- and he's always welcome on this site. If he's saying that baby boys will start to hate all music if they associate it with circumcision, then this is just another looney tunes idea from the foreskin lovers.

  4. Has Provoking Debate have any proof that there is a connection between being un-mutilated & Martian Moon Mumps yet! The pimps of perversion never stop making false claims while tring to pervert others!

  5. Dude, what is the false claim that I made? I never suggested a connection between the foreskin and mumps, although maybe you've got something there. No, I stick to the medical facts -- which is something the foreskin lovers have a hard time doing because the evidence is all against them.

  6. I don't know why Provoking is being so obtuse. This is basic Pavlovian conditioning. Babies don't automatically think "music=good". They get taught it with lullabies, etc. But one powerful negative stimulus like getting the most sensitive part of your penis cut off to music would set up that association PDQ.

    And Provoking certainly wasn't sticking to medical facts when he associated intactness with swine flu!

  7. Dont know about music being any help to babies being circumcised , but it could be very relaxing both to the surgeon doing the circumcising and the client being circumcised if he is older than a baby. My own circ when I was 17 was done to the accompaniment of Mozart which was playing away in the background, A classical symphony lasts just the right length. It sort of goes like this:

    1. Allegro moderato - inject the local anaesthetic and wait for it to work.

    2. Andante - Off with the skin ( freehand with me) and start the stitching

    3. Minuet and trio - finish the stitching.

    4. Allegro molto - Bandage the whole thing up, apart from a pee-window at the end.

    I suppose I should add a 5th movement - pay the bill, but the music had finished by then and anyway I didnt have to pay.

    Different music for different sort of circ? A nice idea. Debussy for a loose one, Schoenberg might make it go a bit jagged, Beethoven for a tight one.

  8. Play the worlds largest puzzle n win a apple i-phone, digital

    cameras and ipods every week.

    click on the link below n win a I phone

  9. A few corrections for you:

    1: People that don't circumcise (or think it odd) actually dominate the world, not just the internet. You're in the minority, as you should be thankfully. I cannot understand why you think cutting off healthy tissue is "beneficial" unless there is an immediate need for it. The reasons AGAINST cutting are for health as well.

    2: Real cute jab at anti-circs editing screams into videos. Not only is this likely not true, but on the other, more rational hand: I've seen pro-circs editing OUT the screams and replacing a video clip with music alone. One was with an advertised torture device. (I.E, new clamp.) Pro circs also tend to lie and exaggerate far more often to cover their ass.

    3: It's not a "snip snip". You're being misleading.

    4: Pain relief IS important. There have been studies done suggesting that early pain and trauma has adverse effects later on in the newborns system. it doesn't matter whether it is consciously remembered, this is still something working against you.

    5: "foreskin lovers" stick to the medical facts as well. You just refuse to see the validity from their side. You're closed minded. Plain and simple.