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Penile Curvature

Penile curvature (chordee) is a birth defect in boys in which the penis is bent during an erection, which even infants can experience. It may occur in as many as one in 200 male births. Chordee results from an abnormal development of the penis but the underlying cause is unknown.  Chordee may or may not cause problems with sexual function in adulthood. If chordee is not detected (and treated) at a young age, it may in theory cause discomfort or pain during sexual activity, for both a man and his partner. Penile birth defects like curvature and foreskin abnormalities may also be a source of locker-room embarrassment. To avoid this problem, pediatric urologists usually attempt to correct chordee around 6 months of age or at the time of presentation if older. If the circumcision was postponed due to the curvature but the family desires one, we recommend fixing the curvature (procedure called phalloplasty) and performing the circumcision at the same time to minimize discomfort. Sometimes hypospadias – an abnormal position of the urinary channel – is discovered at surgery, and can be repaired at the same time. The goals of repair are to restore normal function and cosmesis.