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Male Circumcision

Status of CDC Male Circumcision Recommendations

Some recent reports have speculated about the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) upcoming public health recommendations on male circumcision for HIV prevention in the United States.

It is important to note that the recommendations are still in development and CDC has made no determination at this time about the final content. CDC is employing a deliberative, evidence-based process for developing the circumcision recommendations, which allows for both external and internal CDC experts to provide input. CDC will also publish draft recommendations for public comment before the content will be finalized.

With respect to infant circumcision, it is important to recognize that many options are still being considered in this process, including simply recommending that health-care providers educate parents about the potential benefits and risks to ensure that parents have the information they need to make an informed decision.

In developing its recommendations, CDC is also considering whether circumcision should be recommended for heterosexual adults at high risk for HIV infection in the United States, as well as whether there is sufficient scientific evidence to make any recommendations for men who have sex with men.

Whatever the content may include, CDC's final circumcision recommendations will be completely voluntary. While CDC has not yet determined if male circumcision should be recommended for any population, ultimately the decision will rest with individuals and parents. CDC's public health imperative is to provide the best possible information on the risks and benefits to help inform those decisions.

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