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Topic: parents

Question: Could you briefly explain what hyperspadia is and does this condition require necessary tx? My son has this condition and I have been advised to have it fixed. But it seems like more of a cosmetic issue vs. a medical one.

Answer: I think you mean hypospadias. It is the condition where the urethral opening is on the underside of the penis. When it is mild, surgery is mostly cosmetic and commonly done in conjunction with circumcision. When it is more severe, like when the opening is more on the shaft, then surgery is performed to allow the child to urinate normally and to deposit sperm normally during ejaculation. Not rarely, hypospadias also has curvature of the penis (also called chordee which can cause the penis to bend down, which can make sexual intercourse difficult. Chordee can also be corrected at the same time as hypospadias repair. The more rare opposite condition is called epispadias, where the opening of the urethra is on the top of the penis.

Answered on 05-01-2010 by Donald Nguyen, MD.

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