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.’
Cot death kills around 300 babies in the UK and 3,500 every year in the US.