What are signs or symptoms of penis problems?

Consult your doctor as soon as possible if you have:

  • Changes in the way you ejaculate
  • Bleeding during urination or ejaculation
  • Warts, bumps, lesions or a rash on your penis or in your genital area
  • A severely bent penis or curvature that causes pain or interferes with sexual activity
  • A burning sensation when you urinate
  • Discharge from your penis
  • Severe pain after trauma to your penis

What can I do to keep my penis healthy?

You can take steps to protect your penis health and overall health. For example:

  • Be sexually responsible. Use condoms or maintain a mutually monogamous relationship with a partner who's been tested and is free of sexually transmitted infections.
  • Get vaccinated. If you're age 26 or younger, consider the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to help prevent genital warts.
  • Stay physically active. Moderate physical activity can significantly reduce your risk of erectile dysfunction.
  • Practice good hygiene. If you're not circumcised, regularly clean beneath your foreskin with soap and water.
  • Know your medications. Discuss medication use and possible side effects with your doctor.
  • Pay attention to your mental health. Seek treatment for depression and other mental health conditions.
  • Stop smoking and limit the amount of alcohol you drink. If you smoke, take the first step and decide to quit — then ask your doctor for help.
  • Regular use. Frequent sex or sexual activity might help you maintain erectile function.

Remember, some penis problems can't be prevented. However, routinely examining your penis can give you greater awareness of the condition of your penis and help you detect changes. Regular checkups can also help ensure that problems affecting your penis are diagnosed as soon as possible.

While you might find it difficult to discuss problems affecting your penis with your doctor, don't let embarrassment prevent you from taking charge of your health.

Apr. 13, 2013 See more In-depth