Epispadias can occur in both males and females and is present at birth. Epispadias affects approximately 1 out of every 115,000 boys and 1 out of every 485,000 girls.
An epispadia occurs when the urethra opening is abnormally placed. In a male infant with epispadias, the urethra will be generally open on the top or side of the penis.
Boys will suffer from a short, wide penis and widened pubic bone. In a female infant with epispadias, the urethra will generally be located between the clitoris and the labia or in the abdominal area. Girls will suffer from a widened pubic bone and an abnormal clitoris and labia. In both males and females, urine will flow into the kidney and urinary tract infections are common. It is also common for the child to have urinary incontinence, kidney damage and often infertility issues as an adult.
A doctor will perform a series of tests to diagnose epispadias, which may include blood tests, x-rays and ultrasounds. Treatment involves surgery to help with urine control and appearance.