INTRODUCTION Circumcision, the oldest and most frequently performed surgery in the world, is the subject of controversies. The aim of this study was to conduct a general review of circumcision in the light of the ten questions most frequently raised in the medical community. METHODS Automated search of scientific articles published has been used by interviewing computer databases Medline and Embase from 1990 to 2013. RESULTS The results of three randomized controlled trials have provided information on preventive contributory role of this medical male circumcision. This intervention reduces the risk of acquiring HIV infection, HSV2 infection and the carrier prevalence of HPV. Male circumcision has proven to be effective in reducing the risks of penile cancer and cervical cancer in female partners of circumcised men, urinary tract infections in infants and children. Complications are rare. CONCLUSION The health benefits of circumcision balance the procedure's risks. Circumcision could be considered as a kind of "surgical vaccine", especially in developing countries to prevent the transmission of HIV infection.