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World J Urol. 2013 Aug;31(4):925-8. doi: 10.1007/s00345-012-0890-5. Epub 2012 May 31.

Early hypospadias repair: the contributions of Harvey Cushing.

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  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Johns Hopkins Medical Institute, Baltimore, MD 21287, USA.



The early evolution of surgical reconstructive techniques has been well documented in the literature. However, a review of the Johns Hopkins hospital surgical files revealed an interesting participant in early hypospadias repair: Harvey Cushing (1869-1939).


Following IRB approval, we reviewed the surgical records from 1896 to 1912 and selected from among his non-neurosurgical patients, one case of first-stage hypospadias repair.


Cushing operated upon the 21-year-old patient, performing a first-stage repair of hypospadias, in conjunction with a repair of a right inguinal hernia. The patient was discharged following a second stage operation. At that time, the patient was in good condition and was voiding appropriately. There was no further follow-up.


The repair of hypospadias evolved through the work of European surgeons, from the mid-eighth century through the early nineteenth century. The case we report here illustrates Cushing's early work in the fields of urologic and plastic surgery.

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