Total or partial excision of the foreskin: what it is and how to do it

Circumcision is a surgical procedure performed in case of phimosis, i.e. a narrowing of the foreskin, the mucous skin covering of the glans, which prevents or hinders the sliding of the foreskin itself on the glans, making sexual intercourse and hygiene care difficult. It can be complicated by paraphimosis when the foreskin rolls back and causes swelling of the tissues due to strangulation and cannot be brought back to cover the glans.

What is circumcision

The removal of the foreskin will be carried out on the basis of the anatomical characteristics of the patient’s penis and could result in the persistence of part of the skin covering the glans.

Operation technique

The surgery is generally performed under local anesthesia by injection into the root of the penis. A circular incision is made under the glans including the portion of tissue to be removed which is therefore removed. The subsequent suture of the incision margins will leave the glans uncovered at the end of the operation, either partially (mucosal postectomy) or completely using absorbable sutures. The duration of the intervention is approximately 30 minutes.


The surgery often involves a temporary hypersensitivity of the remaining glans. These annoying symptoms will regress until they normalize within about 2 weeks. It will be necessary to abstain from sexual intercourse for at least 21 days.

Benefits deriving from the intervention

The main benefits deriving from the intervention are:

  • easier intimate hygiene;
  • less discomfort during intercourse.

Complications and/or risks related to the intervention

The possible complications and/or risks related to the operation are:

  • Infection of the surgical wound with diastasis (suture opening). This occurrence leads to a delay in healing and possible anti-aesthetics, even permanent ones;
  • bleeding and hematoma at the glans suture level;
  • edema and swelling of the subcutaneous tissues of the penis due to lymphatic stasis alterations, generally transient, of the sensitivity of the glans, sometimes trophic disorders of the glans itself;
  • scar traction pain during erection or painful penetrative intercourse even months later.


An outpatient Urology clinic is available at Poliambulatori San GaetanoUrology surgeries are performed privately within our facility.

The dedicated English-language answering service is available by calling or texting +393296253353 for information or reservation.