Adult Circumcision: Preparation and Recovery

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If you have decided that circumcision is the right decision for you as an adult, it’s important to get as much information as possible leading up to your surgery. Whilst a skilled and experienced doctor will carry out your circumcision, in this blog we will talk you through what you can do to prepare for your surgery, as well as how to care for yourself as you recover.

How to Prepare

Here are some of the most important things to take note of before your circumcision procedure:

  • On the day of your circumcision, be sure to take a shower and take particular care in cleaning your foreskin and genitalia.
  • Bring tight fitting boxers or briefs to wear after your surgery. Tight underwear helps to minimise the movement of your penis and keeps the dressing in place.
  • Don’t drink alcohol for at least 48 hours before your circumcision. Alcohol can dehydrate you, as well as reducing the effectiveness of local anaesthetic.
  • Before the procedure, which will be carried out under a local anaesthetic, you can eat and drink as normal. Make sure to take in plenty of fluids.
  • If you are a smoker, you should stop before and after your surgery as this can interfere with the healing of your wound, making your recovery time longer and putting you at more risk of infection.
  • Do not take Aspirin or blood thinning medicine, as this can increase bleeding after your circumcision.
  • You should shave your pubic hair a few days ahead of the operation.
  • You may experience some discomfort in the first few days after your operation, so you may wish to arrange for some time off work, particularly if you have a manual job. If you feel worried about telling your employer the reason for requesting time off, you can tell them that you are having minor surgery. Your GP can also provide a sick note that states this, without explicitly mentioning circumcision.
  • If you are planning to drive yourself home after your surgery, you should check that you are still covered by your insurance after a local anaesthesia. You may wish to arrange for someone to drive you home.


After your circumcision, your doctor will provide instructions on how to care for your wound, but here is some useful information to help you with your aftercare.

  • After your surgery, avoid strenuous exercise for at least the first four weeks of your recovery time, or until your doctor recommends. During your recovery, walking a little more than you usually would is a good way to exercise as you recover. 
  • You can return to work when you feel comfortable to do so – some people may feel comfortable going back to work right away, whereas others may need a few more days, especially if they have a more manual job.
  • You should avoid any sexual activity for six weeks or so after circumcision. Your doctor will be able to provide more information.
  • Whilst it is normal to feel some pain and discomfort after circumcision, if you are feeling increased pain, experiencing bleeding, having trouble urinating, or seeing signs of infection (fever, increased redness, swelling, drainage), you should call your doctor.

For further information on circumcision, you can call our specialist team at Modality Circumcision Service on 0121 250 0386.