Meatal stenosis (mee-AT-ul steh-NO-sis) is a birth defect in which the tube that carries urine out of the body, called the urethra, is too narrow.
When this opening, called the urethral meatus, is too narrow, a child may have difficulty urinating (peeing).
Meatal stenosis is corrected in an outpatient procedure — called a meatotomy or meatoplasty — at the hospital. The surgery is performed by a urologist (a surgeon who specializes in the urinary system) and sometimes requires general anesthesia.
In most cases, surgery corrects the condition and the child is able to urinate without difficulty.
Meatal stenosis usually is detected early in a child's life and corrected through a minor outpatient procedure.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
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