While the birth of a Jewish baby boy is a massive reason to be joyful and happy, some parents may be a bit concerned because of the quickly approaching Brit Milah and the nuances the religious procedure entails.
It’s only natural to want to ensure that every part of the sacred ceremony, from the procedure itself to the healing process, goes smoothly without any problems. As such, it’s normal that you want to know everything about the process, how the mohel performs the procedure, what technique they will use, and how these circumcision techniques, in general, may hinder or speed up your son’s recovery.
These are all valid questions, and in this article, Dr. Andrew Krinsky, board-certified religious mohel, will strive to answer all your questions so you can entrust your son’s first sacred interaction with the Jewish Community into the hands of a mohel with trust, without unnecessary stress or anxiety.
Understanding the Subtle Differences Between Circumcision Techniques
Typically, there are three main circumcision techniques: the Gomco Clamp, Plastibell, and the Mogen Clamp.
The Gomco clamp is a metal surgical device that makes the entire circumcision procedure quick and effective. However, it may cause bleeding and lead to infections if not performed correctly. The Plastibell is a plastic device that may also cause excessive bleeding; in some cases, there may be some delay with the removal of foreskin tissue, and the chances of infection may also be slightly higher.
Lastly, the Mogen clamp is a specialized instrument that can be used on both older children and neonatal boys. It’s widely considered the fastest procedure of the three, without any blood and little to no chances of infection.
The Mogen Clamp Technique in Detail
This circumcision technique is the most popular in the US, and numerous mohels in the country use it because of its effectiveness and simplicity. Additionally, the entire procedure is rather quick, with no bleeding and chances of infection afterward. The Mogen clamp method is a widespread technique used countless times, and most mohels agree that it’s the fastest, least painful, and most precise method for any circumcision ceremony.
The device was created by Rabby Harry Bronstein back in 1954 for circumcisions. One advantage of the clamp is that it’s excellent for both neonatal boys and older kids. The device’s name traces its origins back to “magain,” a Hebrew word meaning “shield.”
The device contains two flat, sharp blades between two and a half and three millimeters in size.
How Does the Mogen Clamp Technique Work?
After receiving the parent’s consent, the mohel will place the baby on a flat surface, employing a straight hemostat and exposing the glans penis. Naturally, local anesthetics are applied via a cream or injection.
Finally, after numbing the area and exposing the glans penis, the mohel will extend the foreskin with the hemostats and place the Mogen clamp. After that, the mohel will slide the clamp through the prepuce from the back toward the front. This is among the most crucial steps during the entire procedure, which must be completed carefully and correctly.
After ensuring that the glans penis’ tip is exposed properly, the mohel will lock the device and cut the skin fold from the clap’s upper position with a surgical scalpel. Usually, there will be no sutures needed for newborn babies, but in older kids or adults, applying cyanoacrylate tissue adhesive might be required.
Why Do Most Mohels Prefer the Mogen Clamp?
For the most part, most mohels and rabbis will agree that the Mogen clamp enables the perfect approach to perform the circumcision procedure perfectly. A tried and tested method with fantastic results, most religious experts will agree that this is the best and the safest circumcision experience both for neonatal boys and older kids.
When comparing the Mogel clamp to other circumcision techniques like Plastibell and the Gomco clamp, most professionals will point out that the Mogel clamp delivers superior results from several aspects, such as:
- Short procedure time: This technique often requires less than 30 seconds to perform the surgical procedure. On the other hand, the Gomco clamp may take even the most experienced mohel around five minutes, and the Plastibell may take anywhere from eight to ten minutes. This is essential as parents would naturally like to decrease their baby boy’s time “under the knife,” so to speak.
- Least number of instruments required: The mohel will only need a single hemostat, the clamp, and a surgical scalpel to perform the surgical procedure effectively. In the case of other devices, three hemostats are usually needed, and the procedure has additional steps.
- No redundant tissue: This circumcision technique usually leaves no redundant foreskin, nor does it leave any leftover mucous membrane on the procedure site. Also, the technique makes it much easier to determine whether the right amount of mucous membrane and foreskin has been removed. In the cases of Plastibell and the Gomco clamp, setting the proper angle can be much more challenging. Experts will often find that instead of the right amount of foreskin, there will be too much redundant skin on the entire circumference, too much removed on the bottom side, or too little from the upper area. The Plastibell method also requires leaving a part of the device on the site afterward, which can cause parents to be anxious, requiring them to be responsible for it even after a couple of days following the procedure without any professional help if an unexpected issue arises.
- No unnecessary headaches for parents: The Mogen clamp technique enables the mohel to perform the procedure without any problems, in peace, and quickly, and the parents have no added responsibilities like in the case of the Plastibell method. Without a doubt, this is a massive relief for the parents who can rest assured that their little bundle of joy’s big day will be a perfect and happy experience without any problems.
After the comparison, it’s easy to see why the Mogen clamp is the most popular circumcision technique in the United States. Precise and effective, the method delivers excellent results with no complications.
Learn More About Your Options
As stated at the beginning of the article, it’s only natural for the parents of any newborn Jewish baby boy to learn everything about the ins and outs of the Brit Milah. Knowing the ceremony process, customs, and rules is only one side of the coin. In all actuality, the ceremony’s focal point is a surgical procedure. This knowledge can overwhelm any parent, and as such, they want to know everything about the procedure to find reassurance and peace of mind before the big day.
As such, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us.