BACKGROUND: If the corrections of the cryptorchid testes are delayed, it may lead the patients to suffer loss of testes or fertility. So we purposed to analyze the present status of correction and the causes of delay and tried to emphasize the needs to educate and inform the ideal age for correction. METHODS: Total 363 cryptorchid patients who visited our hospital in 10 years from January 1987 to December 1996 were divided into 3 groups according to their ages at visit as under 2, 3 to 5 and over 6 years groups. We analyzed the operative findings of the 3 groups, compared the ratio of the over 6 group during the half ten years till 1991 to the same ratio after 1992 and also analyzed the causes of delay in 81 patients for whom the causes of delay could be identified in over 6 years group. RESULTS: The age distributions showed 88 patients(24.2%) of under 2 years group, 118 patients(32.5%) of 3 to 5 years group and 157 patients(43.3%) of over 6 years group. When we compare the former 5 years till 1991 to the latter 5 years after 1992, the number of the patients who underwent orchiopexy under the age of 2 were increased from 34 (19.1%) to 54(29.2%) and those over the age of 6 were decreased from 88(49.4%) to 69 (37.3%) but still in higher proportion. The intraoperative findings showed that the rate of atropic or smaller testes than normal size in over 6 years group(128 testes, 73.1%) were higher than those of under 2 years(10 testes, 9.8%) and 3 to 5 years group(28 testes, 20.2 %). The most common causes of delay in over 6 years group was recommendation by relatives or neighbors(36 patients, 48.1%) and the remainders were advices of doctors other than urologists(27 patients, 33.3%), poor economic status(8 patients, 9.9%) and unawareness of the anomaly(7 patients, 8.6%). CONCLUSIONS: To prevent the loss of testicular function or testis itself in patient with cryptorchidism, the early correction should be performed because the recommended age for the correction tends to be decreased. The public information for the recommended age should be provided and also educational programs for the primary physicians are supposed to be performed.