What is Phimosis and recurrent balanitis?
Phimosis is a condition where the foreskin is too tight to be pulled back over the head of the penis. This is normal in uncircumcised baby boys for about the first few years of life.
Phimosis in itself is not a problem usually unless it causes redness, swelling or soreness. Soreness and inflammation of the head of the penis is known as balanitis.
What causes phimosis and how common is it?
Inflammation of the foreskin or the head of the penis (balanitis) may cause phimosis. It may also be the result of poor hygiene.
How is phimosis diagnosed?
Phimosis or balanitis can usually be diagnosed by a physical examination
How are phimosis and balanitis treated?
Where there is infection, balanitis involves a taking a swab of the foreskin, to determine the best course of treatment.
Where there is no infection, phimosis may be managed with daily gentle retraction, use of a topical steroid ointment, or in more serious cases circumcision – which involves removal of the entire foreskin.
Circumcision may also be necessary if your child experiences recurrent balanitis – inflammation of the head of the penis or urinary tract infections. Surgery to release the areas where the foreskin is stick to the head of the penis is also possible.
What are the risks?
What happens after?
- Recovering from anaesthetic
- Dressing changes and follow up appointments
- Pain relief – simple analgesia is usually sufficient
- Return to activity including sports
- Return to school