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Hypospadias in Children: What to Expect at Home

Your Child's Recovery

Hypospadias means that the opening of the tube (urethra) leading from the bladder does not extend to the tip of the penis. Instead, the opening is on the underside of the penis.

To repair this, the doctor created a new opening that allows urine to drain as it should through the penis.

After the procedure, your baby's penis may look red and swollen. Your baby may also have pain. Medicines can help with pain. Swelling or bruising should start to go away 2 to 3 weeks after surgery.

Your baby may have a short, plastic tube (a stent) or a catheter to keep the urethra open. If this is the case, it will need to stay in place for about 10 to 14 days.

Your baby may seem fussy while the penis heals. Your baby may have some pain if the bladder tightens suddenly (spasm) or when your baby urinates after the stent or catheter is removed. This pain usually gets better within 3 or 4 days. But it may last for up to 2 weeks.

This care sheet gives you a general idea about how long it will take for your child to recover. But each child recovers at a different pace. Follow the steps below to help your child get better as quickly as possible.

How can you care for your child at home?


  • Let your baby rest as much as possible. Sleeping will help him recover.
  • You can give your baby a sponge bath the day after surgery. Do not give him a bath for 5 to 7 days.


  • Your doctor will tell you if and when your child can restart his or her medicines. The doctor will also give you instructions about your child taking any new medicines.
  • Your doctor may recommend giving your baby acetaminophen (Tylenol) to help with pain after the procedure. Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label. Do not give aspirin to anyone younger than 18. It has been linked to Reye syndrome, a serious illness.
  • Do not give your child two or more pain medicines at the same time unless the doctor told you to. Many pain medicines have acetaminophen, which is Tylenol. Too much acetaminophen (Tylenol) can be harmful.
  • If the doctor prescribed antibiotics for your child, give them as directed. Do not stop using them just because your child feels better. Your child needs to take the full course of antibiotics.

Incision and catheter or stent care

  • Your child will probably have a dressing over the cut (incision). A dressing helps the incision heal and protects it. Your doctor will tell you how to take care of this.
  • Your child may have a stent or catheter for about 2 weeks. Your doctor will tell you how to take care of this.
    • The catheter or stent will empty urine into your baby's diaper. Change the diaper as your doctor suggests.

Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • Your child passes out (loses consciousness).
  • Your child has severe trouble breathing.

Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • The incision comes open.
  • Your child is bleeding and gentle pressure does not stop the bleeding.
  • No urine has drained from the stent in over 2 hours and your child seems uncomfortable.
  • Your child has signs of infection, such as:
    • Increased pain, swelling, warmth, or redness.
    • Red streaks leading from the incision.
    • Pus draining from the incision.
    • A fever.
  • Your baby is extremely fussy or irritable, has a high-pitched cry, or refuses to eat.

Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if your child has any problems.

Where can you learn more?

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Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.