Does your penis curve during an erection?

By David Samadi 

There is probably no other part of the male anatomy that men scrutinize more than their penis.  Most men expect their penis to function like it was made to do – it goes up when necessary and then goes back down.  But for anywhere from one to 23 percent of men, their penis may be throwing them a curve ball.  

For a man whose penis is not perfectly straight during an erection, he may wonder is this normal or not.  To set the record, uh, straight, a slight curve or tendency to lean to the left or right when erect is considered normal.  But, if the penis has a significant bend that is more noticeable, then it could be a condition called Peyronie’s disease.

What is Peyronie’s disease?

Scar tissue or plaque that forms within a man’s penis is known as Peyronie’s disease. Peyronie’s disease can develop at any age, but men over 40 are affected most often.  The plaque builds up the tissues of a thick, elactic membrance called the tunica albuginea. Either the top of bottom of a man’s penis are common locations of where the buildup of plaque is found.

The plaque that forms is not the same type that develops in a person’s arteries. This form of plaque is not associated with or has any relation to heart disease. The plaque is also noncancerous, noncontagious, and is not caused by or related to a sexually transmitted disease.

Symptoms of Peyronie’s disease

The symptoms associated with Peyronie’s disease can range from mild to severe developing either slowly or suddenly.  Symptoms of this condition include:

  • A curve in the penis when it is erect – usually it curves upward
  • A thickened area or hard lump, which is the plaque, in the shaft of the penis
  • Painful erections and sexual intercourse
  • A misshapen look to the penis, like an hourglass
  • Loss of length or girth of the penis
  • Erectile dysfunction

Causes of Peyronie’s disease

The causes of Peyronie’s disease are unknown. Possible reasons could include the following:

  • Injury due to vigorous sex or other penile injury
  • A chronic or repeated injury to the penis
  • Autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system attacks certain areas of the body’s cells and organs
  • Older age
  • A family history of Peyronnie’s disease

Diagnosing and treating Peyronie’s disease

Any man who has Peyronie’s disease needs to discuss the problem with his doctor.  The longer he waits the greater chance for serious complications.  The complications can lead to not being able to have sexual intercourse, erectile dysfunction, anxiety and stress, and difficulty in fathering a child.

It is best if a man sees a urologist which will diagnosis Peyronie’s disease based on a man’s medical and family history, a thorough physical exam feeling the hardened tissue caused by the disease along with imaging tests.  

Treatment for Peyronie’s disease depends on how severe the condition is.  Some men don’t require any treatment if there is no pain and it is not affecting their sex life.  Non-surgical treatment options include medications and injections of steroids into the area affected.  

In more severe cases, it can be treated with surgery.  Generally a doctor will recommend waiting at least 12 months as the condition can improve on its own without surgery.  Surgery usually involves removing or cutting away the plaque or implanting a device to straighten the penis.  

Dr. David Samadi is the Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Long Island. He’s a renowned and highly successful board certified Urologic Oncologist Expert and Robotic Surgeon in New York City, regarded as one of the leading prostate surgeons in the U.S., with a vast expertise in prostate cancer treatment and Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy.  Dr. Samadi is a medical contributor to NewsMax TV and is also the author of The Ultimate MANual, Dr. Samadi’s Guide to Men’s Health and Wellness, available online both on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Visit Dr. Samadi’s websites at robotic oncolo gy and prostate cancer 911. 

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