Penile problems are not new and a large number of men around the world are living with different medical problems that are related to the penis. There are many different types of penile problems and some of them include:
Priapism is relatively a rare condition which can be painful and involves an erection that lasts for more than four hours. In medical terms, priapism is defined as a persistent painful erection that lasts for more than four hours without any sexual stimulation. It occurs due to disturbances in the mechanism that control penile detumescence and during this condition, blood continues to accumulate in the cavernous sinusoids and causes pain. As a result, the corpora cavernosa which is the main erectile tissue becomes rigid and painful. Priapism is divided into three types:
- Ischemic priapism - It is the most common type of priapism and it is characterized by a persistent and painful erection that is caused due to the disorder of venous outflow from the tissue mass.
- Non-Ischemic priapism - It is characterized by the painless persistent erection that is caused due to excessive blood flow from arteries into the corpora cavernosa.
- Stuttering priapism - This type of priapism mostly occurs due to sickle cell disease and it is characterized by the recurrent and intermittent painful erection.
Normally, when an emotional or physical stimulus increases the blood flow to the penis region, an erection occurs. Blood in the penis causes the blood vessels and nerves to respond as an erection. When the blood flow to the penis doesn’t work properly, priapism occurs.
Balanitis is a chronic condition that results in an inflammation of the glans and most commonly, it is caused by Candida Albicans. It can be caused by the overgrowth of bacteria or yeast which are present on the skin of the glans of the penis. Sometimes, this condition can occur from the irritation from the chemicals of the product applied on the skin or due to various medical conditions. Some of the clinical symptoms of balanitis include:
- Pain and tenderness
- Redness at the end of a penis
- Unpleasant odor
- Difficulty retracting the foreskin
- A pink or red rash
Balanitis is a serious disorder and it is associated with various complications and there are many health problems that are mostly accompanied by balanitis. Some of the complications include buried penis syndrome, balanitis xerotica obliterans, and cellulitis.
3. Erectile dysfunction
Erectile dysfunction is one of the most common problems of a penis which is diagnosed in a large number of men across the world. Erectile dysfunction is sometimes known as impotence. It is defined as a persistent inability of a man to achieve a satisfactory penile erection. In order to achieve a proper penile erection, a man requires
- An adequate level of hormones
- An adequate blood flow to the penis
- Sexual desire
- An intact nerve supplying the penis
A problem in any of the above mentioned factors can lead to the development of erectile dysfunction. Numerous studies suggest that erectile dysfunction is not a syndrome instead, it is a symptom that signal other problems, either physical, psychological or the mixture of both. It is a very common sexual dysfunction and it becomes more common with an advancing age. Other than age, there are many factors that could lead to the development of erectile dysfunction and some of the factors include, smoking, drinking, obesity, diabetes, atherosclerosis, low testosterone, Parkinson's disease, stress, and depression.
4. Peyronie’s disease
Peyronie’s disease is a disorder of penis that is characterized by the presence of scar tissue in the penis and results in the curved penis and deformed erections. These scar tissues or plaques are a different type of plaques that cause the penis to change its shape. The plaque prevents normal stretching and affects the size and shape of the penis.
Most men develop Peyronie's disease as a result of an injury to the penis and Peyronie's disease is thought to happen after repeated bending and bumping of the penis. Initially, it begins as an inflammation which hardens into a lump on the upper or lower side of the penis. The symptoms of Peyronie's disease include:
- Erection problems
- Significant bend to the penis
- Scar tissue
- Relationship stress
There are two stages of Peyronie's disease - acute and chronic stage. Acute stage is the first phase of Peyronie's disease and in this stage, most of the changes in penis occur Plaque forms and changes in the shape of an erect penis occur. On the other hand, in the chronic stage, the plaque and curvature becomes stable and are not likely to get worse. Also, the penile pain lessens during the chronic stage.
5. Penile duplication
Penile duplication is an extremely rare condition and it occurs when the baby is born with two penises. Generally, a child who suffers from penile duplication or have two penises also develops congenital defects and due to these defects, babies born with this disease are at increased risk of infant death.
Penile duplication is also known as diphallia and many malformations are associated with a condition such as a cryptorchidism, hypospadias, bladder exstrophy and pubic symphysis diastasis.