Circumcision and Male Infant Mortality

Infant mortality is infant deaths in the first year per 1000 births. Male infants have a higher rate of mortality than female infants. Here is a comparative table for American births. The ratio of male infant mortality to female infant mortality yields the excess male infant mortality figures in the second column.

Year
Excess Male
Infant Mortality
National Percent Circumcised
19421.2666
19461.2870
19501.29580
19541.3085
19581.3081
19621.29585
19661.29585
19701.2981
19791.24564.5
19821.2462.5
19861.25559.4
19901.2559.0

The rise (1942-1954) and fall (1970-1979) of excess male infant mortality coincides with rising and falling circumcision rates. Values are taken from graphs and are approximate. Circumcision rates between 1942 and 1970 are from Laumann et al. “Circumcision in the United States” Journal of the American Medical Association 1997;277:1052-1057. Later circumcision rates are from the National Center for Health Statistics. Excess infant mortality rates are from Drevenstedt et al. “The Rise and Fall of Excess Male Infant Mortality” Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2008;105:5016-5021.