|The Bao Method|
|Cordillera / Bontok|
In the rural Philippines, "pagtutuli " or circumcision is a pre-adolescent or adolescent rite of passage, traditionally performed on Holy Saturday (Sabado de Gloria). On that day, groups of young boys, often unaccompanied by their parents, brave to the rivers, ready with their handful of bayabas leaves to chew on.
The procedure is usually preceded by
a few hours of bathing in the river, the cold water believed to decreased the amount of bleeding. Getting out of the water, they start chewing their handful of bayabas leaves.
The cut on the prepuce is performed using a labaja (barber's blade) or balisong (fan-knife). The cut is guided by a "lukaw," a wooden contraption carved from a branch of the bayabas tree, one end of which is staked to the ground . The other end, shaped to fit between the penile prepuce and head, is put in place with the lad sitting and straddling the lukaw. The blade is then carefully placed on the prepuce for the dorsal slit and a single blow is delivered by hand or a wooden branch. Immediately, the mouthful of bayabas leaves being chewed is spit out and applied to the wound; this is believed to facilitate healing and prevent infection.
A piece of soft cloth, about 5x5 inches, preferably white, with a small hole in the middle to allow for urination, is wrapped around the penile head and tied with cloth-strings.
The dressing is changed daily, after washing the wound with a decoction of bayabas leaves. Some use chicken feathers tied together to brush the bayabas decoction on the wound. Some apply daily scrappings from the outer coconut shell to the wound. Recently, it has become common practice to apply pulverized penicillin tablets (obtained without prescription) to the wound.
In some rural areas, if unusual swelling occurs (kinamatis), a termite is placed on the swelling to produce a puncture and subsequent draining. If infection occurs, a dog is made to lick off the dried pus, blood and debris. Another practice is the stringing off of dried pus and debris.
|Note: In the recent years, municipal clinics have started providing free circumcision. It is also a service often supported by Rotary Clubs. In some rural areas, it continues as a Holy Week ritual on Holy Saturday.|
|The Bao Method
Another method utilizes half the coconut shell, with the hole slightly enlarged to accommodate the prepuce. The prepuce is pulled through the hole and snipped off with scissors. Recipients of the bao procedure boast and display a cleaner and streamlined cut.
Bontok, boys are expected to be circumcised (nasegyatan)
Last Update April 2012
|Bulong and Orasyon||Pwe-Usog, Pwe-buyag|
|Magasawang Gamot||Other Anecdotal Therapies|