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Castration, also referred as: gelding, spaying, neutering, orchiectomy (or orchidectomy in the Queen's English) and oophorectomy, is any action, surgical, chemical, or otherwise, by which a human loses use of the glands primarily responsible for sexual function. This causes sterilization, preventing them from reproducing; it also greatly reduces the production of certain hormones, such as testosterone or estrogen, . Male castration is usually considered painful, and in some countries is used as torture. It should not be confused with penectomy, which is the whole or partial removal of the penis, nor with vasectomy, which is a procedure to sterilize a male by blocking the vas deferens, the tubes that connect the testicles to the prostate. It is not the same as a clitoridectomy, which is the partial or total removal of a woman's clitoris.

Castration is the common phrase for Bilateral Orchidectomy, the removal of the testes.

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