Infected Circumcision, Newborn

The infection at the end of the penis is a known possible, but very rare complication of circumcision. It is usually caused by a bacteria germ. Symptoms include redness, swelling, and pain. A culture may be needed to know the exact germ causing the infection and to know the best treatment.


  • Keep the penis and infected area clean. Be very gentle when cleaning.

  • Bathe the baby normally but do not use scented soap.

  • Apply antibiotic cream or ointment to the red and swollen area.

  • If antibiotics were prescribed, give them as directed.

  • Call your caregiver or return to the Emergency Department for exam in 2 to 3 days.


  • Your baby is 3 months old or younger with a rectal temperature of 100.4° F (38° C) or higher.

  • Your baby is older than 3 months with a rectal temperature of 102° F (38.9° C) or higher.

  • Pus drains from the site.

  • There is marked redness and swelling around the circumcision site or shaft of the penis.

  • You notice persistent irritability.