Research Article|Articles in Press

A multi-site pilot study of a parent-centered tool to promote shared decision-making in hypospadias care

Published:February 06, 2023DOI:



      Using a user-centered design approach, we conducted a two-site pilot study to evaluate a decision aid (DA) website, the Hypospadias Hub, for parents of hypospadias patients.


      The objectives were to assess the Hub’s acceptability, remote usability, and feasibility of study procedures, and to evaluate its preliminary efficacy.


      From June 2021–February 2022, we recruited English-speaking parents (≥18 years old) of hypospadias patients (≤5 years) and delivered the Hub electronically ≤2 months before their hypospadias consultation. We collected website analytic data using an ad tracker plug-in. We inquired about treatment preference, hypospadias knowledge, and decisional conflict (Decisional Conflict Scale) at baseline, after viewing the Hub (pre-consultation), and post-consultation. We administered the Decision Aid Acceptability Questionnaire (DAAQ) and the Preparation for Decision-Making Scale (PrepDM) which assessed how well the Hub prepared parents for decision-making with the urologist. Post-consultation, we assessed participants’ perception of involvement in decision-making with the Shared Decision-making Questionnaire (SDM-Q-9) and the Decision Regret Scale (DRS). A bivariate analysis compared participants’ baseline and pre/post-consultation hypospadias knowledge, decisional conflict, and treatment preference. Using a thematic analysis, we analyzed our semi-structured interviews to uncover how the Hub impacted the consultation and what influenced participants’ decisions.


      Of 148 parents contacted, 134 were eligible and 65/134 (48.5%) enrolled: mean age 29.2, 96.9% female, 76.6% White (Extended Summary Figure). Pre/post-viewing the Hub, there was a statistically significant increase in hypospadias knowledge (54.3 vs. 75.6, p < 0.001) and decrease in decisional conflict (36.0 vs. 21.9, p < 0.001). Most participants (83.3%) thought Hub’s length and amount of information (70.4%) was “about right”, and 93.0% found most or everything was clear. Pre/post-consultation, there was a statistically significant decrease in decisional conflict (21.9 vs. 8.8, p < 0.001). PrepDM’s mean score was 82.6/100 (SD = 14.1); SDM-Q-9’s mean score was 82.5/100 (SD = 16.7). DCS’s mean score was 25.0/100 (SD = 47.03). Each participant spent an average of 25.75 min reviewing the Hub. Based on thematic analysis, the Hub helped participants feel prepared for the consultation.


      Participants engaged extensively with the Hub and demonstrated improved hypospadias knowledge and decision quality. They felt prepared for the consultation and perceived a high degree of involvement in decision-making.


      Extended Summary Figure
      Graphical AbstractCONSORT diagram depicting study enrollment and data collection.


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      Linked Article

      • Decision making in hypospadias and complications: the elephant in the hypospadias room
        Journal of Pediatric Urology
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          I read with great interest the study by Binion et al [1]. The authors continue their efforts to provide a tool (hypospadias hub) to empower parents to make an informed decision about hypospadias surgery [2]. Decisional regret (DR) in parents of children who underwent hypospadias surgery has been the interest of many studies in recent years. It has been linked to decisional conflict and the authors could demonstrate they reduced it in the studied cohort of 27 parents by providing extensive pre consultation information.
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