The birth rate of hypospadias in the Turku area in Finland
Reports based on national registers of congenital malformations have suggested that the birth rate of hypospadias has increased during the last few decades. Register‐based information may, however, have pitfalls because of changes in diagnostics, reporting accuracy and registration system. The aim of this study was to determine the current birth rate of hypospadias in Turku University Central Hospital (TUCH) in Finland. This was a prospective study on live‐born boys born in TUCH from 1997 to 1999. In the total birth cohort (n=5,798) as well as in a special subcohort group (n= 1,505) 0.3% of boys had hypospadias. Only one scrotal hypospadias was found in a boy who had a chromosomal anomaly. Other hypospadias were glandular or coronal. No increase was found in the birth rate of hypospadias when comparing our result with register‐based data of boys born in Finland during the years 1970 to 1986 and surgically treated for hypospadias by the age of 8 years. No difference was found either from malformation register‐based data concerning the nationwide birth rate of hypospadias during the years 1993 to 1998. Due to differences in national registration systems between countries, prospective studies with equal assessment criteria are needed in order to make reliable international comparisons.
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