Health Risks from Circumcision

You can report any concerns about circumcision involving direct oral suctioning to the Department of Health.

Circumcisions with direct oral suctioning, also called metzitzah b'peh, can cause herpes in newborn male babies. Circumcision involves cutting off skin and leaving an open wound on the penis. The Department of Health strongly advises that circumcision with direct oral suctioning never be performed.

A mohel can perform circumcision with direct oral suction only if at least one parent has consented in writing, by signing a form entitled “Consent to perform oral suction during circumcision”.

If your child has had an out-of-hospital, ritual Jewish circumcision with direct oral suctioning and you are concerned about your baby's health, talk to your family doctor or pediatrician.

You can also report to the Health Department a circumcision with direct oral suction that was performed without written parental consent.