Bad Things That Can Happen to a Penis

Male sexual anatomy showing penis, urethra, seminal vesicles, scrotum and testes, and prostate. A.D.A.M

Most men take their penises for granted. As long as the plumbing works, they just go about their business of elimination and procreation. As a sexual medicine specialist, I need to share with all the men out there things to look out for to keep their penises safe and operating at maximal potential. What follows is a list of tragedies and mishaps that can befall a penis.

Broken Penis 

Even many health care providers outside of urology still don’t believe a man can break his penis.

  Despite some of its common nicknames, a penis truly isn’t a bone. But it can still fracture. How? When a penis is in its erect state, the blood pressure builds up to cause an erection is at least twice normal systemic blood pressure. This high pressure blood is held in place by a fibrous tissue layer called the tunica albuginea. When an erect penis is engaging in its most preferred activity of sexual intercourse and it accidentally slams into a fixed structure, usually the pubic bone of the sexual partner, the tunica can rupture and send all that blood into the surrounding tissue. The man usually hears and feels a snap and the erection immediately goes away. Quick to follow is massive bruising and swelling leading to what is commonly called an eggplant deformity. This requires urgent surgical intervention.

How does a fellow avoid penile fractures? Don’t get too drunk prior to engaging in sex—most of the ones I’ve repaired over the years have been attached to guys who have had so much to drink, they lose coordination and feeling.

Avoid extramarital sex. Another study found that penile fractures are more common in trysts that happen outside of the bedroom—elevators, limos, public restrooms.

Penile Cancer

Penile cancer is rare in developed countries with access to good hygiene. It has never been reported in men circumcised at birth.

It is caused by the Papilloma virus, just like cervical cancer in women. It is, therefore, a sexually transmitted disease. The incidence of penile cancer in developed countries where boys are not routinely circumcised, most of Europe and Australia, for example, is very low. This suggests that uncircumcised men that wash their penis and retract the foreskin daily are at a minimally increased risk of developing cancer.

How do you know if you have it? It can start out as a scaly looking lesion, a red spot, or an ulcerous lesion. If you have anything that looks like that, see a urologist or dermatologist to evaluate and possibly biopsy the spot. The worst thing you can do is ignore it. If caught early, penile cancer can be surgically excised just like taking a mole off. If you let it go, you may need (yikes) amputation of part or all of your penis.

Guilty Penis 

I made this diagnosis up but I see it all the time. This happens to married guys who take business trips without the wife, find a strip club or hook up at the bar and have an extramarital affair. I’ve seen guys come in with penile pain, painful urination, rashes, bladder pain, prostate pain and testicular pain. It can happen with oral sex, vaginal sex, manual stimulation, lap dances—it doesn’t matter.

A guy has remorse for straying, gets all the sexually transmitted disease testing which is negative and develops a chronic, sometimes debilitating pain in their genitals.

There is a urinary tract infection called nongonococcal urethritis which is caused by a few bacteria, most common is ureaplasma, that has all the symptoms of gonorrhea without a positive gonorrhea test. So, I first treat these guys with antibiotics and hope it gets better but antibiotics don’t cure the guilt of adultery. This is a pretty easy one to fix, don’t cheat. If you do cheat and have any symptoms, get a full checkup because the only thing worse than you getting a disease is passing that on to your unsuspecting partner.

There are plenty of other things to be concerned about as a man but keep these in mind and do what you can to protect your part.

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