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Urology. 2007 Jun;69(6):1195-8.

Surgical approach to concealed penis: technical refinements and outcome.

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Andrological Surgery Unit, Department of Nephrology and Urology, Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital, Rome, Italy.



A concealed penis is defined as a phallus of normal size buried in prepubic tissue (buried penis), enclosed in scrotal tissue (webbed penis), or trapped by scar tissue after penile surgery (trapped penis). We report our results using a standardized surgical approach that was highly effective in both functional and cosmetic terms.


From January 2002 to December 2005, 56 patients (median age 7 years) underwent surgery for a buried penis, 11 (median age 5 years) for a webbed penis, and 20 (median age 8 years) for a trapped penis. All 20 patients with a trapped penis had previously undergone circumcision for phimosis, except for 3 (1 for multioperated lymphangioma, 1 for repaired hypospadias, and 1 for corrected glanular epispadia). All webbed penises were phimotic, requiring circumcision. The surgical technique consisted of complete exteriorization of the shaft and reconstruction of the penopubic and penoscrotal angles. These maneuvers, however, proved extremely straightforward, with the addition of an incision along the scrotal raphe without any incision of the penile skin.


All the patients were observed for at least 1 year after repair. Recurrence was observed in 3 boys with a buried penis (5.3%); all 3 boys were obese. Two cases of a trapped penis (10.0%) recurred, but no case of a webbed penis recurred. Regarding complications, 2 patients with a buried penis presented with mild lymphatic stasis of distal shaft that spontaneously subsided within a few months.


The scrotal approach we have described has simplified the complete exteriorization of the penile shaft, with easy bleeding control, avoiding the use of flaps, grafts, and additional ventral Z-plasty often described in published reports. In addition, the cosmetic results were judged to be good by the parents.

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