Circumcision is a surgical procedure to remove the foreskin, the skin covering the end of the penis. Surgery is done in the operating room under anesthesia or in our Pediatric Sedation Clinic. Circumcision may be done at any age. Your child can go home the same day. This handout will tell you how to care for your child at home after circumcision.

Home Care

The penis will be red, swollen, tender and may ooze a small amount of blood or fluid after surgery. This is normal.

Use acetaminophen (Tylenol®) and ibuprofen (Motrin) for pain. Your doctor may prescribe stronger pain medicine if your child is older.

Your child may have a bandage over the penis. This should be removed at home in 48 hours. After the bandage comes off, apply large amounts of Vaseline or petroleum jelly to the site a few times a day, for 5-7 days and after every bath. For infants, apply it with each diaper change.

Your child may have pain or tenderness with movement or diaper changes. Gently wipe the penis with water and soap. Pain will lessen as the penis heals, usually in about a week.

Your child may bathe as instructed by your doctor, within 24-48 hours. Frequent bathing helps the penile skin to heal and may comfort your child. Recommend baths with warm soapy water for 5-10 min 1-2 times daily to help the area heal.

Your child will have stitches. The stitches will dissolve on their own, usually in 2-4 weeks depending on how often your child is bathing, but may last up to 90 days.


  • No straddling, rough play or swimming for 2-3 weeks.

  • Your child may do other activities when he feels comfortable.

When to Call

If you have any problems, please call your clinic or doctor.

Who to Call

Pediatric Urology Clinic

Monday-Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30 pm


The toll-free number is 1-800-323-8942.

After hours, nights and weekends, the clinic number will be answered by the paging operator. Ask for the Urology Resident on call. Give your name and phone number with the area code. The doctor will call you back.