Hypospadias boys after repair
Sometimes, for months I think about sitting down and blogging. Now with the holidays, a floppy new puppy, work at my agency busier than ever and a husband experiencing health issues, I feel the weight of world on my shoulders. Many of us do. But this morning I woke, coffee in hand and sat down to read a comment from the second mama who reached out to me this week. Amongst her message, titled ‘Thanks’, she said something that brought tears to my eyes: “God picks his strongest warriors for his toughest battles. I believe this will make them even stronger in the future.” I believe this with all of my heart. I think I also cried because it softly pokes at an old wound and reminds me of Emmett’s battle. Moms, it can be so very hard. When I respond to each of you, I do so with all of my heart because I’ve been there. Most of our concerns are the same. Most of our worries after hypospadias repair are the same. Even before deciding to repair, we have the sometimes gut-wrenching decision of whether to repair our son’s hypospadias or not. Is it our decision? How do we know we made the right one? How will it affect him in the future? Will his hypospadias surgery be a success?
As I type, Emmett runs downstairs looking for Percy the Train (Thomas’ friend), he’s naked, as always, and couldn’t be more happy and healthy, eyes full of life, his blond hair wild and free. For us, now almost a year after that first beautiful stream, I believe it was.
Sometimes moms ask about hypospadias repair for mild cases, or how we told our son or plan on discussing hypospadias with him in the future. Sometimes parents keep the hypospadias just between parents and grandma-grandpa and feel isolated. I was asked the other day about the psychologist effects of hypospadias boys after repair down the road. In my mom opinion, the more we can be open with them about their body, and remember that quote, ‘God picks his strongest warriors for his toughest battles’, we can maybe mitigate some of the psychological effect. Emmett was getting ready for bed last night, still naked, and with a smile he said “good pee pee”. As insignificant as it sounds, he’s right. It is a good pee pee. I hope for him to never have problems with it or issues surrounding it. I want for him to love it and his battle through it. I wouldn’t repair a son with mild hypospadias, but in our case and with the potential for issues with urination, erections and sexual function later in life, I believe repairing my son’s hypospadias was the right choice. I’m pleased beyond belief with the work of Dr. Warren Snodgrass and Dr. Nicol Bush.
Emmett’s doing amazing and I still celebrate every pee. Although sometimes he says “Pee pee hurts”. I find this is when he gets a little erection while he also has to pee. I find that taking him pee immediately resolves it. I ask again about it afterwards and he typically says “All better” : ) Down the road, he may have an issue, he may not. Time will tell.
The impact of operative interventions on sexual function has been lightly addressed, in part for privacy and for lack of followup after hypospadias surgery. Studies find men with hypospadias tend to have intercourse later in life than men without hypospadias. However, they also find the better a man feels about his body and genitals, which also depends on the appearance of his penis following the operation, the fewer emotional and psychological difficulties he has, the better his well being and how relaxed he is about sex and relationships as a man.
It’s worth noting that a good proportion of men with hypospadias have penis’ on the smaller side. Since penis size can be a source of anxiety, it’s possible that hypospadias boys after repair of more distal hypospadias can grow up with some psychological issues, however it may have some to do with penis size and shape. But, like was told to me a couple times while Emmett was in utero, “Penis’ come in all shapes and sizes”.
The best to you through your journeys, mamas. – Christina