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Adult circumcision in Kunming

JanJal (1027 posts) • +2

I post this here for future reference to anyone who wants to know. There was earlier thread (now locked), but with little concrete information and more argumentation against or in favor of the operation.

I come from culture where the procedure is not generally practised except for medical reasons, so I didn't have much information beforehand. My case was also medical.

I had the operation done in First Affiliated Hospital of Kunming Medical University. My wife acted as translator in all but the final steps. The actual procedure with needed preparations and waiting took about 1 hour for us, and total cost was a little under 1000 RMB.

I will not include generic information about hospital functions in China, such as registering to see a specialist. And I try to keep the gory details to minimum.

SEEING UROLOGY SPECIALIST

Our first visit was in late 2016 for consultation.

I had previously studied what current treatments there are for my problem, and I had a less invasive procedure in mind. Circumcision was still a backup option.

After registering for the visit, we went to see specialist in 3rd floor of the outpatient building (门诊3A).

The random specialist that we met with seemed to know the procedure I wanted, but for various personal reasons we had to wait a few months longer before having any operation.

Our next visit was on a Wednesday in 2017 to actually arrange the operation. In previous visit we had learned that the head of the urology department, Mr. 徐建春, had studied in USA and could speak more English than other doctors, so we had arranged a meeting specifically with him.

I found that he did indeed speak some English, but his stay in US may have been a while ago. Still, if you have reason to visit urologist in Kunming for any reason, he might be a good choice.

Mr. 徐建春 either ruled out or did not know about the procedure that I initially wanted, and suggested full circumcision instead. My wife was pregnant at the time, and I wanted to get this over with before our baby is born, so I agreed to that.

It may have been possible to get the operation done the same day or at least the next day, but we opted for two days later in Friday.

Upon agreement of the procedure, the doctor wrote several bills and prescriptions. These included:

- payments for the operation itself

- medicine for local anesthesia during the operation

- medicines for post-surgery pain

- cleaning powder to use at home

PAYMENT AND MEDICINE PICKUP

After leaving the doctor's office, we made the payments at a counter in the same floor. All in all it cost a little less than 1000 RMB.

Then we headed downstairs (first floor) to collect the medicines. In this step we had to queue at correct counter. This was indicated in the prescription receipt, and was simplified by displays above each counter showing the patients' names who are expected to make pickups at each counter.

SCHEDULING THE SURGERY

Once the medicines were collected, we headed to inpatient building 1 (住院部1号楼). Urologic surgery department is located the 9th floor of this building. Note that the elevators here follow odd/even floor access, and to get to 9th floor we had to use the leftmost elevator. This information was only in Chinese.

Once in 9th floor and in the correct department, the nurse at desk took the anesthesia medicine for

safekeeping until needed, and we agreed on day and time when we should come for the operation. In Friday only morning times were possible, and we were advised to arrive between 8:30-9:00 in Friday morning.

Furthermore, the nurse showed (and wrote on piece of paper) what additional items we would need to buy. These were a disposable razor to clean the body area and two hospital sheets that would be used in the day of surgery. She also advised to wear loose clothes on the operation day, because there would be no changing to any hospital attire, and to take shower in the morning of surgery day.

The needed items could be bought from a convenience store downstairs, by showing the paper that the nurse wrote at the store checkout. Once we had purchased the items, we could go home.

SURGERY DAY

In Friday morning, we arrived to the hospital early before 8. While waiting, we gave the previously purchased items to the nurse at the desk. I assume they were delivered to operation rooms for later use by the staff. A nurse also came to ask if I had eaten breakfast (may have been worried I starve while waiting).

Closer to 9, the show started. In addition to myself, two other patients were there for the same operation - four more had pre-registered but didn't show up. The number of patients may affect how long the visit takes for you, but considering the nature of the operation as adult, that may be minor concern.

First we were taken to office to sign documents for the operation. Name, year and month of birth, and signature were the only things needed. The doctor (who was not the specialist we had seen before, but a younger guy) briefly talked about the operation and the next steps in Chinese.

After this we queued for shaving. This was in a small room, where a nurse asked to take pants down, get horizontal on the bed, and then she shaved the private area. Pants back up and to next step.

Now we were waiting outside the surgery room. While we were waiting, a nurse gave us a piece of paper that contained some information about the procedure as well as instructions for post-surgery care. This was of course in Chinese. The procedure would use an adult version of PlastiBell device (more about that later).

Once it was my turn, I went to the surgery room and changed to hospital slippers just for the few steps it took to walk to the operation bed. Once I figured which side of the bed my head would go to, I got on the bed and took pants down again.

Present in the room were the young doctor and a nurse.

The anesthetics were delivered, and then the operation took place. I could clearly feel first couple of moves, so I think the doctor hurried a little. Not too bad though. After the operation completed, I got up and just quickly observed that I had all remaining components in place.

After operation, we were asked to wait 30 minutes before going home, in case there would be any immediate complications. During this waiting the effect of anesthetics started to fade off, and I had one pill for the pain. It probably helped some, but I could still feel discomfort during our bus ride home.

We walked out the hospital door at 10:00.

ABOUT PLASTIBELL

This is a ring-like device designed to prevent bleeding during and after operation, so no stitches or bandaging is needed. A tight string will cut blood flow to the foreskin, allowing doctor to remove most of foreskin under anesthetics.

The device will be left attached with the remaining foreskin when you go home. Becauses the tissue that the device is attached to is without blood flow, it should die and let the device come off on its own in 3-4 weeks - same way umbilical cord came off your belly button when you were infant, and aftercare to some degree requires similar care.

No follow-up visit to hospital will be be necessary if all goes normally. In western countries, this device is more commonly used with infants, in which case the ring will come off in just 3-7 days.

As there is no bandage and the wound area is effectively sealed by the device, there are no restrictions for showering - bathtub or swimming should be avoided though.

Shang ring is a little bit similar device of Chinese design, but as far as I know, it requires another visit so doctor can remove the device and apply bandage.

AFTERCARE

The pain medication that was prescribed came in 3 varieties:

- Acotinine based painkiller, which is a medicine AFAIK only used in China (use with caution, 1 pill at a time, max 3 in a day and at least 6 hours apart)

- some Chinese anti inflammatory medicine, 1 pill at a time

- another Chinese medicine, 3 pills at a time

We were also told that if we prefer, we can use OTC paracetamol or other suitable medication for pain instead. You can try to find what doctors in your home country usually prescribe in these situations, and see if it's available in China.

The prescribed cleaning medicine (which I started to use one day after surgery) came as powder, which had to be mixed with warm water in disposable paper cup (very little, just few grains of the powder to a little more than half full cup of water - depends on your size of course). The private parts would then be soaked in the pink concoction three times a day, 20 minutes at a time. 20 minutes was what doctor said, while the paper we got said 5-10 minutes.

PAIN

This is probably what every adult undergoing the operation worries about, and since this is China and practises may differ from other countries, some words about it.

In operation itself, the needle hits (2 of them I counted) for delivering anesthetics were slightly painful. Also the doctor hurried a little, because I clearly felt the first cut.

Next time I felt any pain, was when the anesthetics effect came off in about 30 minutes after surgery.

Arriving home, I took one round of each medicine that I didn't yet take at the hospital, and then went to bed. I managed to get about 1 hour of sleep and woke up with no pain whatsoever. That lasted for about 3-4 hours, then the discomfort gradually returned. I had another dose of the medicines in the evening.

The next nuisance came at night (several times) from the nocturnal issue that men experience, and this went on for the whole recovery time.

Another point of pain occurred after showers and after cleaning the area. This pain lasted for a few minutes at time, and disappeared after couple of days as body adjusted.

RECOVERY

My surgery was in Friday morning, and first good whole day was in Sunday. If you have regular work, you should probably take at least two days off.

After 3 days there appeared some inflammation in the remaining skin, which didn't bother me during day, but caused discomform at night. I actually visited doctor again to ask if this requires attention, but he said it's normal, just wait it out. This gradually became easier in a few days.

In retrospect, the week starting 2 days from surgery was easy time.

Then after 10 days, skin started to loosen from the ring device. This happened little by little over almost couple of weeks. This process, as well as the broken skin it left behind, was often painful. This caused daily and nightly "ouch" moments when moving in way which repositioned the private parts. Some bleeding occurred a couple of times, and visually this was the nastiest time too.

One cause for pain at this time was, that the previously shaven hair had just grown back and when it stung to the broken skin, it felt horrible. Advice could be to cover or daily shave the hairy areas where the skin could get in contact with.

Compared to the first week, in the second week I pretty much didn't dare to go out for anything that wasn't necessary.

CONCLUSION

Overall, the worst time was the week when the ring started coming off.

In my case though, the original problem (that this procedure fixed) appeared while getting wife pregnant and since she is going to deliver any day now, I guess my pain was only fair.

If you want any more details or information, you can PM me or comment here.

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