Study: Circumcising Newborn Boys Increases Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Chris Menahan
Aug. 17, 2018

From The Daily Mail:
Circumcising newborn boys increases their risk of cot death, new research suggests.

Male babies who have their foreskins removed are likely to suffer from the condition, also known as Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), due to the stress of the procedure, a UK study found.

Such stress may include bleeding and pain or could be related to the procedure separating the infant from its mother and restraining it to a board.

Researchers believe this may explain why cot death is more common in baby boys than girls.

They wrote: '[Male circumcision], the most common unnecessary surgery in the world, is a major risk-factor for SIDS.'
Here's more data from JTA:
The circumcision study’s results are based on data from 15 countries and over 40 U.S. states during the years 1999-2016. Elhaik’s team looked at the relationships between SIDS and what the researchers said were two common causes of stress in very young infants: male neonatal circumcision and premature birth.

In the United States, circumcision accounted for some 14.2 percent of the prevalence of SIDS in males, the researchers wrote[...]

SIDS rates are significantly lower in U.S. states where Hispanic people make up more than eight percent of the population, the researcher wrote. Circumcision is relatively rare in Latin America.

Heymans noted that Elhaik’s study does not take into account the potential impact of additional factors that may influence SIDS. “There are many social-economic differences between Hispanics and White Americans, as well as different eating habits” that are not factored in Elhaik’s study, Heymans said.

SIDS prevalence was the lowest in the Netherlands, with 0.06 deaths per 1,000 births, and highest in the United States, with 0.82 deaths. According to the World Health Organization, at least 61 percent of American circumcise their children. In the Netherlands, where only Muslims and Jews tend to perform the procedure, that figure is lower than five percent of the population.
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