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Penile subincision is a procedure performed on males in which the underside of the penis is split open so that the urethra is exposed. This procedure is far more invasive than an ordinary circumcision, and is more comparable to some forms of female genital mutilation, although it is less common. It is performed primarily as a coming-of-age ritual among some cultures, such as Indigenous Australians. As with FGM, this procedure is sometimes self-performed, and carries a great many health risks, including infections, increased risk of contracting and transmitting STDs, and difficulty urinating.
In some cultures that practice it, subincision is seen as a partial feminization of the male genitalia. Among several Australian tribes, the penetration of a subincized penis by another penis (usually that of a young boy) is a traditional practice. Some authors have speculated this to be the original purpose of subincision.
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