Chordee is a common problem that affects male infants during birth. It is a congenital condition that affects almost one male child in every 200 births. When the doctor diagnoses chordee infant is recommended for surgery at the earliest. Chordee happens when the penis is shaped and curved sharply up or down. It happens at the tip or end of the penis.
Hypospadias and chordee
Kids with the condition of hypospadias can also suffer from chordee. Hypospadias is the condition in which the urethral opening is not situated on the tip of the penis, but rather on the underside. The opening can be located in several areas like:
- The tip of the penis
- The bottom of the shaft
- The area where the penis is attached to the scrotum
- Between the anus and scrotum
Symptoms of chordee
One of the most visible symptoms of chordee is the sharp upward or downward curve of the penis. The curve can begin either from the penis base near the testicles or the beginning of the glans. When a child has the hypospadias condition along with chordee, he will show symptoms like urine splashing in random directions during urination. This symptom might not occur in every case of chordee infant condition.
Some other signs and symptoms are:
- Skin tethering relates to a significantly thin penis tip surrounding the tissue near the urethra.
- Penile torsion indicates the midline raphe on the penis shaft is in a circular motion, rather than along the shaft.
- The foreskin covers only the top portion of the penis tip, rather than wrapping around the entire penis tip.
- A webbed penis because the skin on the bottom portion of the penis shaft remains connected to the scrotum skin.
When chordee is not taken care of in the early childhood days, sex can be difficult, uncomfortable, and sometimes impossible because of the strange penis shape. In mild cases, a male might not notice the shape of his penis being curved until he gets his first erection.
Causes of chordee?
Chordee can begin when the penis stops growing in a fetus all of a sudden due to several reasons. According to researchers, during the 10th week of pregnancy, the tissues gradually transform into the penis and become curved. When a child is born with a curved penis, it indicates that the tissues might have stopped growing and thereby become curved. Doctors around the world are not 100% sure of the reasons why tissues stop growing. It is believed that genetics might be the reason. When circumcision is practiced on an inflamed penis, it might give rise to chordee infant condition. This is because the healing thick tissue scar can get pulled upward or downward causing the curve shape.
Diagnosis of chordee
Since it is a congenital condition, the doctor can easily diagnose chordee by looking at some of the symptoms on the penis during childbirth. Some diagnostic examinations include:
- Blood and urine tests to confirm the overall health of the child.
- A saline solution is used to make a child’s penis firm to analyze the curve. In case, the curve is 30o upwards or downwards, the doctor strongly recommended going for surgery.
In the majority of the cases, a pediatric urologist confirms the diagnosis of chordee and performs any required surgery.
Treatment of chordee
The motive of the treatment is to straighten the penis of the child and also ensure the urethral opening is located at the penis tip. The surgeon executes the following:
- Anesthesia is used to ensure that the child is sleeping comfortably during the surgery.
- Extracting additional tissues that cause the penis to bend
- Using tissues to make the penis straight by ensuring that it is of the same length on all sides.
- Extending the urethra to the penis tip where the tissue has undergone surgery.
- Any openings or cuts must be stitched.
- Filling the penis with a medical saline solution and evaluating whether the penis is straight after surgery.
- Finally, the doctor wraps the penis in a surgical dressing and keeps it protected.
When a pediatric urologist diagnoses a chordee infant is recommended for surgery at the earliest to avoid any complications. During childbirth, chordee can be easily diagnosed by the doctor. In the majority of the cases, the condition gets treated right on tim