Hypospadias is a common and relatively minor birth defect. It means that the opening of the urethra is on the underside of your child’s penis instead of at the tip of the penis. The urethra is the tube that drains urine from the bladder. When your child has hypospadias, his urethra may be:
The exact cause is not known. It’s more common in babies with a family history of hypospadias and may be related to a problem with hormones as a baby develops in the uterus.
A child with hypospadias has an abnormal spray of urine, which means that the urine comes out from some place other than the tip of the penis. Other signs of this problem may include:
Your child’s healthcare provider will ask about your child’s symptoms and medical history and examine your child. The diagnosis is often made when your baby is first born, before he leaves the hospital.
In general, hypospadias causes no immediate problems for baby boys and surgery can be delayed until the baby is older. The treatment is surgery, usually done by a pediatric urologist when your child is 6 to 12 months old. With surgery, the urethra can be put in the correct position and, if needed, the penis can be straightened.
In most cases, your child will be able to urinate normally after surgery.
Follow the full course of treatment prescribed by your child’s healthcare provider. Ask your provider:
Make sure you know when your child should come back for a checkup. Keep all appointments for provider visits or tests.