A boy born with two penises thanks to an extremely rare birth defect has had to have the bigger one removed.
The lad from Brazil had “complete” diphallia – meaning that the extra member was more than just a stump.
The unnamed patient was two at the time of the procedure and doctors initially planned to save his larger, left penis.
Despite the size difference both looked similar and were working, with the boy’s mum confirming that both could get erect.
However, medics later found out that he could only urinate from the smaller, right penis as the urethra of the larger one was too narrow.
Medical examinations also revealed that each member only had one of two corpora cavernosa, the spongy columns in the shaft of the penis which fill with blood when becoming erect.
Surgeons were forced to remove the bigger one, a decision made based upon “functionality and not on size”.
Given that he now only has one corpora cavernosa it remains unclear whether he’ll ever be able to achieve erections.
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This follows a similar cases reported in Urology Case Reports earlier this year, when doctors in Uzbekistan came across a seven-year-old with two functioning penises.
Both members had urethras and erectile tissue but it was unclear whether both could actually become erect.
Again, doctors were forced to remove one of them.
Although diphallia isn’t life-threatening in itself, boys born with two penises tend to suffer a higher risk of kidney dysfunction and issues with colorectal systems.
This in turn could lead to infections and possibly death, hence why doctors remove one of the penises.