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Common Urological Problems in Paediatric Patients

Urological problems in paediatric patients can significantly impact a child’s health and quality of life. These issues range from congenital abnormalities to acquired conditions, each requiring careful diagnosis and tailored treatment approaches. This article provides an in-depth overview of common urological problems in children, focusing particularly on their diagnosis and treatment.

Common Urological Problems in Paediatric Patients Dr M Roychowdhury Dr Rajan Bansal Urologist Jaipur C Scheme Rajasthan

Introduction to Paediatric Urology

Pediatric urology is a subspecialty focusing on disorders of the urinary system and genital organs in children. These conditions can be congenital (present at birth) or acquired, and they often require specialized knowledge for effective management. Early detection and appropriate treatment are crucial to prevent long-term complications and to ensure the well-being of the affected child.

Common Urological Problems in Pediatric Patients

1. Phimosis in Male Child

Phimosis is a condition in male children where the foreskin of the penis cannot be fully retracted over the glans (head) of the penis. This condition is common in young boys. It may cause ballooning of prepuce during urination. It can often be managed with medicines but may need circumcision in severe cases. Phimosis may also cause recurrent UTIs.

2. Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Urinary tract infections are among the most common urological problems in children, particularly affecting girls. UTIs can involve any part of the urinary tract, including the urethra, bladder, ureters, and kidneys.

Causes and Risk Factors

  • Bacterial Infections: Escherichia coli (E. coli) is the most common pathogen.
  • Anatomical Abnormalities: Conditions like vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) and ureteropelvic junction (UPJ) obstruction can predispose children to UTIs.
  • Hygiene Practices: Improper wiping techniques in girls can increase the risk of infection.


  • Infants: Fever, irritability, poor feeding, vomiting.
  • Older Children: Dysuria (painful urination), frequent urination, abdominal pain, hematuria (blood in urine), and foul-smelling urine.


  • Urinalysis: Detects the presence of bacteria, white blood cells, and nitrites in the urine.
  • Urine Culture: Confirms the bacterial pathogen and guides antibiotic therapy.
  • Imaging Studies: Ultrasound, voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG), or dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) scan to evaluate for anatomical abnormalities.


  • Antibiotics: Oral or intravenous antibiotics depending on the severity of the infection.
  • Hydration: Encouraging fluid intake to flush out bacteria.
  • Hygiene Education: Teaching proper wiping techniques and ensuring regular diaper changes for infants.

3. Vesicoureteral Reflux (VUR)

Vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) is a condition where urine flows backward from the bladder into the ureters and kidneys. This can lead to recurrent UTIs and kidney damage.

Causes and Risk Factors

  • Congenital Abnormalities: Defective ureteral valves are the primary cause.
  • Family History: A genetic predisposition to VUR.


  • Recurrent UTIs: Frequent infections can indicate VUR.
  • Hydronephrosis: Swelling of the kidney due to urine retention.


  • VCUG: An X-ray exam that visualizes urine flow and detects reflux.
  • Renal Ultrasound: Assesses kidney size and structure.
  • DMSA Scan: Evaluates kidney scarring and function.


  • Observation: Mild cases may resolve spontaneously with age.
  • Antibiotic Prophylaxis: Low-dose antibiotics to prevent recurrent UTIs.
  • Surgery: Ureteral reimplantation or endoscopic injection of bulking agents for severe cases.

4. Hypospadias

Hypospadias is a congenital condition where the urethral opening is located on the underside of the penis rather than at the tip. This can affect urination and, later in life, sexual function.

Causes and Risk Factors

  • Genetic Factors: Family history increases the risk.
  • Hormonal Factors: Disruptions in androgen signaling during fetal development.


  • Abnormal Urethral Opening: Located along the underside of the penis.
  • Chordee: Downward curvature of the penis.
  • Hooded Foreskin: Incomplete foreskin formation on the underside.


  • Physical Examination: Identifies the location of the urethral meatus and any associated anomalies.
  • Genetic and Hormonal Testing: In complex cases with additional abnormalities.


  • Surgical Correction: Performed between 6 and 18 months of age to reposition the urethral opening and correct chordee.
  • Postoperative Care: Pain management, catheter care, and regular follow-ups to monitor healing and function.

5. Undescended Testes (Cryptorchidism)

Undescended testes or cryptorchidism is a condition where one or both testes fail to descend into the scrotum. This is a common congenital anomaly affecting male infants.

Causes and Risk Factors

  • Prematurity: Higher incidence in premature infants.
  • Hormonal Disorders: Disruptions in the hormonal signals guiding testicular descent.


  • Non-Palpable Testes: Absence of one or both testes in the scrotum.
  • Asymmetry: Noticeable difference in scrotal size or appearance.


  • Physical Examination: To locate the testes.
  • Ultrasound: To identify the position of non-palpable testes.
  • Laparoscopy: For cases where ultrasound is inconclusive.


  • Hormonal Therapy: Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) to stimulate testicular descent, though less commonly used.
  • Orchiopexy: Surgical repositioning of the testes into the scrotum, typically performed between 6 and 12 months of age to reduce the risk of complications.

6. Enuresis (Bedwetting)

Enuresis refers to involuntary urination, commonly at night (nocturnal enuresis). It is a frequent concern in pediatric patients and can impact a child’s self-esteem and social interactions.

Causes and Risk Factors

  • Genetic Factors: Family history of enuresis.
  • Developmental Factors: Delayed bladder maturation.
  • Psychosocial Factors: Stress, anxiety, or significant life changes.


  • Involuntary Urination: Typically during sleep, but can also occur during the day (diurnal enuresis).


  • Medical History: Detailed history to identify potential causes.
  • Physical Examination: To rule out anatomical or neurological issues.
  • Urinalysis: To exclude infection or diabetes.


  • Behavioral Therapy: Bladder training exercises, moisture alarms, and establishing a regular urination schedule.
  • Medications: Desmopressin to reduce urine production at night, and anticholinergics to increase bladder capacity.
  • Counseling: Addressing underlying psychosocial factors through counseling and support.

7. Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence results from neurological causes like spinal cord abnormalities (Spina bifida, cauda equina syndrome etc). Urodynamic study will confirm the nature and cause of incontinence due to neurological deformity and appropriate management can then be started. Incontinence may be due to ectopic ureter where one of both the ureters end abnormally in urethra in males or urethra/vagina in females. Usually surgical correction treats the condition.

Diagnosis of Paediatric Urological Problems

Accurate diagnosis of pediatric urological problems requires a combination of thorough medical history, physical examination, and appropriate diagnostic tests. Early and precise diagnosis is essential for effective management and prevention of complications.

Medical History

A detailed medical history helps identify symptoms, their onset, duration, and any associated factors. Family history, past medical conditions, and previous urological issues are also considered.

Physical Examination

Physical examination includes assessing the abdomen, genitalia, and perineum. Specific observations may include:

  • Palpation of the abdomen for masses or distention.
  • Inspection and palpation of the external genitalia for anomalies.
  • Neurological examination if neurogenic bladder or other neurological conditions are suspected.

Laboratory Tests

  • Urinalysis: Checks for signs of infection, blood, or crystals in the urine.
  • Urine Culture: Identifies the presence of bacterial infections.
  • Blood Tests: Evaluates kidney function and detects any underlying metabolic disorders.

Imaging Studies

  • Ultrasound: First-line imaging for assessing the kidneys, bladder, and genitalia. It is non-invasive and provides valuable information on structural abnormalities.
  • VCUG: A voiding cystourethrogram is used to evaluate the bladder and urethra during urination, particularly for detecting VUR.
  • DMSA Scan: A nuclear medicine test to assess kidney function and detect scarring from recurrent UTIs.
  • MRI and CT Scan: Advanced imaging techniques for detailed visualization in complex cases.
  • Urodynamic Study: In case of neurogenic bladder to find out the exact nature of the incontinence.

Treatment of Pediatric Urological Problems

Treatment of paediatric urological problems is multifaceted, involving medical, surgical, and behavioral approaches tailored to each condition and the individual needs of the patient.

Medical Management

Medical management includes the use of medications to treat infections, manage symptoms, and prevent complications. Common medications include:

  • Antibiotics: For treating and preventing UTIs.
  • Analgesics: Pain relief medications for symptomatic relief.
  • Hormonal Therapy: For conditions like cryptorchidism.
  • Anticholinergics and Desmopressin: For managing enuresis.

Surgical Intervention

Surgical intervention is often required for congenital anomalies and severe conditions that do not respond to medical management. Common surgical procedures include:

  • Orchiopexy: For undescended testes.
  • Hypospadias Repair: Surgical correction of the urethral opening and chordee.
  • Ureteral Reimplantation: For severe VUR, ectopic ureter to prevent kidney damage.
  • Cystoscopy: For diagnosis and treatment of bladder abnormalities.

Behavioral and Supportive Therapies

Behavioral and supportive therapies play a crucial role, especially for conditions like enuresis and recurrent UTIs. These therapies include:

  • Bladder Training: Techniques to improve bladder control.
  • Hygiene Education: Teaching proper hygiene practices to prevent infections.
  • Counseling: Providing psychological support to address emotional and social impacts.


Urological problems in pediatric patients require a comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment. Early recognition and intervention are vital to prevent long-term complications and to promote a healthy, active childhood. Advances in medical and surgical management continue to improve outcomes, ensuring that children with urological conditions receive the best possible care.

Best Hospital for Urological Problems in Children – Institute of Urology, C Scheme, Jaipur

The Institute of Urology is a beacon of advanced medical care, renowned for its expertise in addressing all pediatric urology problems with the highest levels of technical precision, care, and comfort. Utilizing state-of-the-art diagnostic and surgical technologies, the institute offers comprehensive treatments for conditions such as hypospadias, undescended testes, vesicoureteral reflux, neurogenic bladder and more.

The pediatric urology team, comprised of highly skilled and compassionate specialists as Dr. M Roychowdhury (MCh Urology) and Dr. Rajan Bansal (MCh Urology), employs minimally invasive techniques to ensure the best outcomes and swift recovery for young patients. By combining cutting-edge technology with a family-centered approach, the Institute of Urology not only excels in medical excellence but also prioritizes the emotional and physical well-being of children and their families, making it a trusted leader in pediatric urological care.

We have also started the facility of online consultation so that you can discuss about your problems in detail with our experts from the comfort of your home. Please remember to keep ready all the investigations that you’ve had done so far so that it is helpful for the specialist to guide you precisely about the next course of action. At Institute of Urology, we strictly abide by the International protocols so that we keep up with the latest and best of what the advancements in the medical field has to offer.

Our doctors can be reached Monday to Saturday during working hours.
Dr. M. Roychowdhury – 9929513468/ 9829013468
Dr. Rajan Bansal – 8601539297


  1. Tekgül, S., Dogan, H. S., Hoebeke, P., Kocvara, R., Nijman, R. J., Radmayr, C., & Stein, R. (2016). EAU guidelines on pediatric urology. European Association of Urology.
  2. Elder, J. S. (2007). Pediatric urology. In: Tanagho EA, McAninch JW, editors. Smith’s General Urology. 17th ed. New York: Lange Medical Books/McGraw-Hill; p. 682-730.
  3. Rushton, H. G. (1997). Vesicoureteral reflux and scarring. Pediatric Nephrology, 11(5), 591-598.
  4. Barbagli, G., Sansalone, S., Romano, G., & Lazzeri, M. (2009). Hypospadias repair: An overview of the actual techniques. European Urology Supplements, 8(6), 536-544.
  5. Misseri, R., & Schwentner, C. (2013). Urinary tract infection and vesicoureteral reflux in children. In Pediatric Urology (pp. 125-139). Springer, London.
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