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Penis Disorders: Signs, Symptoms, and Treatment

by Dr Prem Community Writer
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Most men measure their masculinity, at least to some extent, based on the health (and size) of their penis. While most would agree that size isn’t everything, there are some much more serious penile conditions that men should be aware of. This can be a touchy subject, which is why often times, even common penis disorders go undetected or untreated for too long. If you’re ready to put your pride and embarrassment aside, let’s discuss some common disorders, the warning signs, and treatment options.

Erectile Dysfunction

Erectile-Dysfunction

This is one of the most common disorders related to the penis. And it can be one of the most troublesome. Erectile dysfunction (ED) affects about 5% of men over the age of 40. This number increases as men age. ED is described as difficulty getting and maintaining an erection. There are a long list of factors that cause ED – including stress, certain medications, high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes. ED impacts a man’s sex life greatly, which in turn, affects his overall self-confidence and well-being. Treatment for erectile dysfunction varies based on the cause. The most common way to treat ED is through the use of medication. The main purpose is to increase blood flow to the penis. Most men with ED can address the underlying causes and lead a happy, healthy life.

Peyronie’s Disease

Most men place a lot of importance on the appearance of their penis. To men, their penis is a symbol of their masculinity. So, when there’s something wrong with that, it negatively affects their confidence and mental state. Peyronie’s disease is caused by scar tissue (also known as plaque) that forms inside the penis. This build up causes the penis to curve or bend in one direction or another when erect. The good news is, Peyronie’s disease doesn’t stop a man from having sex, but it may be uncomfortable. This could, in time, develop into erectile dysfunction. Calcium blocker medications can help prevent plaque buildup, in addition to other dietary supplements, your urologist may also suggest surgical procedures if necessary.

Balanitis

BalanitisNot all penile disorders have to do with what’s going on internally. Balanitis occurs when there’s an infection in the head of the penis. This infection is common among males with uncircumcised pensis because of the amount of skin surrounding the head of the penis. Those with circumcised penises are also at risk since the foreskin can trap bacteria and dirt, causing an infection. It’s important for men of all ages to properly clean the head of their penis daily to avoid infection. The best way to perform this cleaning is using mild soap and water. Avoid any harsh chemicals or soaps with added chemicals. This can irritate the sensitive skin at the tip of the penis. Those with diabetes are at greater risk for developing balanitis. Most medications used to treat diabetes work by flushing sugars out of your body through urination. This build up of sugar can cause bacteria to grow at the tip of the penis and cause an infection. Warning signs that you might have balanitis include redness, irritation, pain, and discharge coming from the head of the penis.

Priapism

While thousands of men suffer from the inability to get an erection (ED), others may exhibit the opposite problem. Those suffering from priapism have a constant erection, to the point of it being painful. What’s even worse is that these persistent erections happen without warning, making them equally as embarrassing. While having an erection during intercourse is meant to feel good, an erection lasting longer than a few hours (and one that occurs outside of sexual stimulation) is actually quite painful. While this may sound like a rather humorous condition, priapism is anything but! In fact, treatment must be immediate. Men suffering from an erection lasting more than four hours need to have blood drained from their penis immediately. Medication call restricts this blood flow, helping to prevent the recurrence of unwanted erections.

Penile Cancer

Penile CancerPenile cancer is relatively rare, with just over 2,000 cases reported each year. But that doesn’t make it any less serious. In fact, due to the low number of reported cases, this condition sometimes goes undetected. It’s interesting to note that 63% of reported cases of penile cancer are associated with the HPV — the human papillomavirus. Early warning signs of this type of cancer include blisters on the shaft, head, or foreskin of the penis. These blisters are often red and painful. Untreated blisters will eventually discharge blood or another foul-smelling liquid. While there’s no way to totally prevent penile cancer, there are certain measure you can take to protect yourself.

The first step is to avoid the most common risk factors which include not being circumcised, poor genital hygiene, and exposure to HPV. While there’s no solid proof that men who haven’t been circumcised are at higher risk for developing penile cancer, some doctors see a correlation. Proper genital hygiene is important, regardless of your gender or age, but it’s especially important when you’re trying to prevent penile cancer. Both men with uncircumcised and circumcised penises need to pull back their foreskin and properly clean the entire penis. In some cases, the foreskin remains stuck back — a condition called phimosis. You can use a cream or ointment prescribed by your doctor to help the foreskin move back and forth more easily. There’s also the option of a procedure called dorsal slit where the foreskin is cut to expose the glands, but without removing any tissue.

The health of your penis is about more than just aesthetics. By practicing proper hygiene and protecting yourself from bacteria, infection, and other illnesses, you can ensure both your penis and the rest of your body remain healthy and functioning.

Article Submitted By Community Writer

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