Operation Smile doctors surgery
Diphallia affects around one in five million human malesKham/Reuters

Surgeons have successfully operated on a young boy born with three penises. The two-year-old Indian boy, who has not been named, was born with a rare condition called diphallia. The condition causes males to be born with two penises. However, doctors identified that the boy had a third undeveloped penis and was also born without an anus.

Speaking to Indian news outlet Daily News and Analysis, Dr Paras Kothari, head of paediatric surgery at Sion Hospital on the outskirts of Mumbai, where the boy underwent surgery, said: "The boy suffers from diphallia. At birth, he had three penises, but he was able to pass urine through only one of them."

One of the boy's penises was able to pass urine while two of them had erectile tissue. Dr Vishesh Dixit from Sion Hospital added: "There was a huge soft boney mass and tissue to which the penises were attached. However, the anus was absent. Two years ago, after his birth, the doctors in Uttar Pradesh had created an incision on the lower left side of his stomach, in a procedure called Colostomy, to let the excreta pass through a tube.

"The two functional penises were fused into one by wrapping a mass of skin around them. Further, an anal path was created through the boy's rectum to facilitate the passage of excreta."

Further surgery will need to be carried out to close the incision in his stomach. Dr Kothari added: "The incision through which he currently passes excreta will only be closed after the anal path that has been created by us heals and is capable of function."

Such is the rarity of diphallia that just 100 cases have been reported since 1609.