Hypospadias

Also known as: distal hypospadias, proximal hypospadias.

What is hypospadias?

Urine normally flows from the bladder through a tube (the urethra) to the outside of the body. Normally the opening of the urethra is at the tip of the penis.

Hypospadias is a structural birth defect (congenital) that results in the opening of the penis not being at its tip; its opening being anywhere on the underside of the penis between the scrotum and the lower underside of the penis.

What causes hypospadias? 

The exact cause of the development abnormality is unknown, however genetics (it is more frequent in some families), hormones and environmental factors may be involved. Increased risk is associated with having an older mother, a mother with diabetes, a mother being exposed to cigarette smoke or pesticides before birth, being born low birth weight or preterm or being one of a twin.

What are the symptoms of hypospadias? 

An abnormal direction of urine flow from the underside of the penis, caudee (a downward curve of the penis), and an incomplete foreskin (dorsal hood) are frequent.

What are hypospadias care options? 

Surgery is often required.


Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: 3/30/2018 9:06:48 AM

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