2 week old intact son only has 1 kidney - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 04:26 PM - Thread Starter
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My son who is 2 weeks old is intact and has only 1 kidney.  I need to take him to see a ped kidney specialist and am terrified to do so. I talked to me midwife and a ob and then to me ped right after birth and everyone said they didnt think that only having 1 kidney should influence our decision to circ or not to circ. But then 3 days later our ped tried to retract him at our routine check up and made comments about hygiene and how much extra work it will be. This totally freaked me out as having only 1 kidney puts him at increased risk of uti's thus extra dr visits. Since our ped visit I am  extra worried that the specialist wont respect our wishes to not retract him.


He is our 3rd son and the only one who is intact, I already feel overwhelmed and worried that we made the wrong decision,. How would you handle this situation? I just want to protect my son...


Thank you in advance

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#2 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 05:30 PM
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 I'll let others respond with more info but that doctor was very wrong to retract. Your son is only at risk from ignorant doctors, but as long as you are knowledgable, then you are in good shape.  Can you find another pedi? I would go in with a note or a contract or something BEFORE they see him I wanted to add that I saw another post on this board with an excellenly worded contract to be signed by doc before the diaper comes off.

Mom to Delia  (5/25/07) and Alex  (4/10/10) and 2 spoiled kitties
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#3 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 06:16 PM
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Before his diaper comes off tell the Dr. "Because of a past experience I am not comfortable with you touching his penis. There is nothing wrong with it so please do not touch it" Since he will have a lot of Dr. apts. you are going to have to get used to putting your mama bear in charge and speak up before the exam begins. I would not say please dont retract because to many Dr. do not see moving the foreskin a little as retraction and they can hurt your ds without meaning to. I know it is hard to say anything but after seeing my ds almost hurt twice I learned to speak even though my face flamed bright red every single time because I am just not outspoken like that.

If they tell you that having a foreskin causes an increased risk of UTI you say my research dosnt back that up and it isnt an option move on please. Because there is no proof out there that this is the case. The study showing the increased risk compared premature intact newborns to full term infants. Being premature automatically puts the boy at higher risk. As a matter of fact hm having the foreskin will protect him more from bacteria.

Keep repeating to yourself I did the right thing. You know in your heart you did it is just outside influence making you feel doubt.

I would either tell your current ped. to keep his hands off your ds's penis or find a new ped if you like this one for other things. There is no extra work with intact you dont retract it dont allow anyone else to do it. Wash like a finger from base to tip. In the bath give a little swish and other than that ignore it.

The Dr. works for you he MUST follow your wishes if you make it clear to leave it alone and they dont pick up your ds and walk out. Find another intact friendly Dr. and go there. Be sure you are not distracted by other kids or the baby crying and be in a position where you can physically stop the Dr. by removing his hand. I have had to do that before sucks but hey the alternative is ds possibly being hurt and I am not willing to risk that.

SAHMlovin' to DD 10/00 & DS 10/04 If your son is intact, keep him safe, visit the Intact Care forum Circ, a personal choice, Your SONS 11/98 6/99 Thyroid cancer survivor. With 5 & 2 Boxers wishing for
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#4 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 06:24 PM
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congratulations on your little one!  how lucky he is you decided to keep him as he was made.


i'm sorry to hear that you are getting scared.  i think that is a normal reaction when something like this happens.  i used to have a friend who's 2nd son (both her boys are intact) was born w/ one kidney.  seemed she was quite nervous about it while she was pregnant but after he was born, he just had to pee before he left the hospital.  i'd be happy to check w/ her about it more if it would help.  why do they want you to see a specialist?  has he had trouble urinating?


and another idea it addition to the last poster, if/when they suggest circ, you could ask them how they would handle this if it was a girl.  girls can have just one kidney too ;-).  surely they wouldn't suggest a circ for a girl!


last idea i thought of before finishing, you could contact marilyn milos of no-circ (google her/nocirc.org)- she's an RN and/or doctors oppossing circumcision for recommendations on drs. who are foreskin knowledgeable.


good luck mama! 

Baby the babies while they're babies so they don't need babying for a lifetime.
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#5 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 06:29 PM
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Here is the information to contact Maralyn from what I have heard she is more than happy to help you in any way. Maybe even finding a intact friendly urologist to take your ds to. Also if you want resources to back up your no retraction stance you can look in the Resources sticky and print things off to take with you.

NOCIRC(Maralyn Milos)
PO Box 2512
San Anselmo
CA 94979-2512
[email protected]
Phone: 415-488-9883
Fax: 415-488-9660

SAHMlovin' to DD 10/00 & DS 10/04 If your son is intact, keep him safe, visit the Intact Care forum Circ, a personal choice, Your SONS 11/98 6/99 Thyroid cancer survivor. With 5 & 2 Boxers wishing for
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#6 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 09:46 PM
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can you find a new ped? this one is making you nervous. and with good reason. retract a 3 day old baby? why?? on earth??

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#7 of 11 Old 01-13-2011, 11:57 PM
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I used to have a friend years ago who was born with one kidney. She was not circumcised, and did not have any infection problems or ill effects from the combination of one kidney and intact genitals.

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#8 of 11 Old 01-14-2011, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by paquerette View Post

I used to have a friend years ago who was born with one kidney. She was not circumcised, and did not have any infection problems or ill effects from the combination of one kidney and intact genitals.

Exactly.  What would they do for a girl?  Always keep that in mind.  Male genitals are not less important than female.

DS1 2004 ~ DS2 2005 ~ DD1 2008 ~ DS3 2010 ~ DD2 born at 31 weeks Oct. 2014
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#9 of 11 Old 01-14-2011, 07:56 AM
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The foreskin is meant to be fused to the glands of the penis. Your son's foreskin may not fully retract until he goes through puberty. His foreskin protects the glands and helps keep bacteria OUT. There is no need to prematurely retract his foreskin and clean under there, so hygiene is not an issue at all. He is already as clean as can be! All you need to do is wipe his penis like you would wipe a finger if it gets messy during diaper changes. It doesn't make anything harder at all. It's much harder to clean a baby girl's labia folds but doctors don't tell us to chop those off.




Mama to 5 busy bees (12, 9, 7, 3, 2) and expecting #6 June/2014

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#10 of 11 Old 01-14-2011, 08:50 AM
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First, ((hugs)) mama! I imagine that there is heightened anxiety anytime a child has something like this. I know that my stress level was through the roof when I delivered pre-term twins via emergency c-section and they were in the NICU (and I had two more at home, too), so I can kind of relate. I hope you are taking care of yourself, and getting some rest and help with that two-week old plus older kids.


Second, I agree with much of what others have said. You did the right thing by leaving your new son intact. No sense exposing ANY child to an open wound in a diaper and risk of bleeding, and in particular one who has a known "issue," however insignificant that issue may be in the long run.


No retraction needs to happen, ever.


If your son is making urine and is growing and developing normally, why would any further follow-up of any kind be needed? Is there some long-term risk or procedure that requires you to establish a relationship with a urologist NOW? I sometimes think that we seek specialist care (this definitely includes me, so this is NOT critical in any way!), and of course specialists are trained to find and treat problems ... not to tell you that everything is fine.


If I were you, I would seriously reconsider the need to see a urologist, and I would also find a different pediatrician who is more knowledgable about the foreskin. It may not be easy. You might even consider a family practitioner or a nurse practitioner, depending on what's available where you live.


In the (UNLIKELY) event that your son does require a urinalysis, try to use a sterile bag. If cath is required, I would VEHEMENTLY demand that a NICU nurse do it. They are used to intact babies with even tinier penises (pl?) than your son has, and they know how to do it w/o retracting. In the even less likely scenario that your son requires any sort of surgery, make sure that you discuss cath/retraction with ALL the doctors/nurses involved. Sometimes they try to convince parents just do a circ "at the same time" (more procedures = more money!), which I assume you wouldn't want. And sometimes kids require caths for surgery, regardless of location. See above, and require a NICU nurse to place the cath.


Until such time as your son demonstrates UTI, or any other health issue related to having a single kidney (which should be sufficient for him, barring other complications!), I would not mess with it. Enjoy every moment with him, and your other children, and don't "borrow trouble" as my 92 year-old grandmother always says.


Hang in there! We're all here to help you, and support you, anytime.

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#11 of 11 Old 01-14-2011, 07:55 PM
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My DD only has one kidney.  We had a VCUG done at birth and in her case they recommend an ultrasound every 5 years or so (she has Multicystic dysplastic kidney (MCDK).)  Her left kidney was so full of cysts that it never developed.  It's about the size of a pea now and completely non functional (which was the best case scenario).  She is now 7 and has never had a UTI or any other problem.  She hasn't even been to a Ped since she was 2 weeks old.  No one ever suggested we remove any part of her genitals and I would have slapped the heck out of anyone that ever did.  No one has ever messed with her genitals (except the cath at birth for the VCUG) and there is never any reason to.  The problem is with her kidney, not her genitals.  Same with your son.  There is no reason anyone should be touching his penis or foreskin and you should simply not allow it.

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