Home-dilatation of the urethral meatus in boys


A.E. MacKinnon, Sheffield Children's Hospital, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TH, UK.
e-mail: emackinnon@sch.nhs.uk



To evaluate the efficacy of dilatation of the stenotic urethral meatus in boys at home.


Eighteen boys aged 3–15 years, or their parents, were taught to dilate the urethral meatus at home. The cause of the stricture was balanitis xerotica obliterans (BXO) in five and consequent upon hypospadias surgery in 12, of whom two were complicated by BXO, and one after circumcision for cultural reasons. One boy was re-referred after an interval of 3 years because of apparent deterioration of the stream of urine. Meatal dilatation was taught in the home by one of the authors (J.M.S.)


Nine patients were cured by the first course of dilatation, four relapsed early after initial success but responded to further treatment, and three proceeded to meatoplasty because they had no response. Two relapsed late and one responded to further dilatation but the other required surgery.


Dilatation of the urethral meatus can be taught successfully to boys or their families at home, thus avoiding repeated hospital attendance and often general anaesthesia.