Circumcision Cuts Penis Sensitivity, Research Praised by Children's Rights Group

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Circumcision removes the most sensitive part of a man's penis, a conclusion NOCIRC finds obvious.

The National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers welcomed the findings. "We've had anecdotal evidence of a significant loss of sensitivity from circumcision for a long time," director Marilyn Milos, RN, said. "Now we have proof."

Researcher Dr. Morris Sorrells and others enlisted 159 men from the San Francisco Bay area, 91 of them circumcised, and conducted touch-sensitivity tests—using a standarized instrument that presses onto the skin with calibrated monofilaments -- on 17 different places on their penises. The men could not see where they were being touched.

Five sites on the penis -- all regularly removed by circumcision -- are more sensitive than the most sensitive site remaining on the circumcised penis.

Previous studies, such as one by Masters and Johnson in 1966, found no difference between circumcised and intact penises, but that was not well documented and ignored the foreskin.

"More work needs to be done," Milos said. "We need to know how this translates into sexual functioning and sexual pleasure. Many circumcised men say they couldn't stand any more sensitivity, but intact men obviously can stand it, so it's a matter of quality as well as quantity. The bottom line is, circumcision takes away sensitivity, which translates into a loss of pleasure, too."

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Sensitivity lost from circumcisionSensitivity lost from circumcisionThis graph indicates a 75% loss of sensitivity reflected in the area of the two penises shown. The lost sensitivity is comparable to the sensitivity that would be lost if all the skin was sliced off all ten fingertips. This graphic is available copyright free to media reporting on the "Fine-touch Pressure Thresholds in the Adult Penis" article by Sorrells et al. published in the BJUi provided credit is given and they are not altered or used in such a fashion as to misrepresent the data or conclusions in the article. Credit: www.icgi.orgSensitivity lost from circumcisionSensitivity lost from circumcisionThis graph indicates a 75% loss of sensitivity reflected in the area of the two penises shown. The lost sensitivity is comparable to the sensitivity that would be lost if all the skin was sliced off all ten fingertips. This graphic is available copyright free to media reporting on the "Fine-touch Pressure Thresholds in the Adult Penis" article by Sorrells et al. published in the BJUi provided credit is given and they are not altered or used in such a fashion as to misrepresent the data or conclusions in the article. Credit: www.icgi.orgSensitivity lost from circumcisionSensitivity lost from circumcisionThis graph indicates a 75% loss of sensitivity reflected in the area of the two penises shown. The lost sensitivity is comparable to the sensitivity that would be lost if all the skin was sliced off all ten fingertips. This graphic is available copyright free to media reporting on the "Fine-touch Pressure Thresholds in the Adult Penis" article by Sorrells et al. published in the BJUi provided credit is given and they are not altered or used in such a fashion as to misrepresent the data or conclusions in the article. Credit: www.icgi.orgSensitivity lost from circumcisionSensitivity lost from circumcisionThis graph indicates a 75% loss of sensitivity reflected in the area of the two penises shown. The lost sensitivity is comparable to the sensitivity that would be lost if all the skin was sliced off all ten fingertips. This graphic is available copyright free to media reporting on the "Fine-touch Pressure Thresholds in the Adult Penis" article by Sorrells et al. published in the BJUi provided credit is given and they are not altered or used in such a fashion as to misrepresent the data or conclusions in the article. Credit: www.icgi.org