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Aesthet Surg J. 2018 Dec 13. doi: 10.1093/asj/sjy325. [Epub ahead of print]

The Surgical Treatment of Adult Acquired Buried Penis Syndrome: A New Classification System.

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Departments of Surgery and Urology, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI.



Adult acquired buried penis (AABP) syndrome may be associated with an inability to void, sexual dysfunction, and recurrent infection. Previously published classification systems rely on intraoperative findings, such as penile skin quality.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate outcomes after AABP repair and to develop a classification system based on preoperative assessment.


The authors reviewed data from patients who underwent buried penis reconstruction at a single institution. Patient history and physical examination guided the development of a classification system for surgical planning.


Of the 27 patients included, the mean age was 56 ± 15 years and mean body mass index was 49 ± 14 kg/m2. Patients were classified into four groups based on examination findings: (I) Buried penis due to skin deficiency, iatrogenic scarring, and/or diseased penile skin (n=3); (II) Excess abdominal skin and fat (n=6); (III) Excess skin and fat with severe penile retraction (n=16); and (IV) Type III plus severe scrotal edema (n=2). Surgical treatment (eg, excision and grafting, mons suspension, panniculectomy, translocation of testes, and/or scrotectomy) was tailored based on classification. Complications included wound breakdown (n=3), cellulitis (n=4), and hematoma (n=1). Nearly all patients (96%) reported early satisfaction and improvement in their symptoms postoperatively.


Classifying patients with buried penis according to preoperative examination findings may guide surgical decision-making and preoperative counseling and allow for optimized aesthetics to enhance self-esteem and sexual wellbeing.


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