Male Genital Problems and Injuries
Reference Male genital Opens New Window Reference Opens New Window problems and injuries can occur fairly easily since the Reference scrotum Opens New Window and penis are not protected by bones. Genital problems and injuries most commonly occur during:
- Sports or recreational activities, such as mountain biking, soccer, or baseball.
- Work-related tasks, such as exposure to irritating chemicals.
A genital injury often causes severe pain that usually goes away quickly without causing permanent damage. Home treatment is usually all that is needed for minor problems or injuries. Pain, swelling, bruising, or rashes that are present with other symptoms may be a cause for concern.
Male genital conditions
- Reference Testicular cancer. This is the most common cancer in men 15 to 35 years old. Testicular cancer is more common in white men than in black men. Many growths in the scrotum or testicles are not cancer (benign). But a painless lump in a testicle may be a sign of cancer.
- An Reference erection problem. This may occur when blood vessels that supply the penis are injured. A man may not be able to have an erection (erectile dysfunction), or the erection may not go away naturally (Reference priapism Opens New Window), which is a medical emergency.
- Reference Torsion of a testicle Opens New Window. This occurs when a testicle twists on the spermatic cord and cuts off the blood supply to the testicle. This is a medical emergency.
- Scrotal problems. These problems may include a painless buildup of fluid around one or both testicles (Reference hydrocele Opens New Window) or an enlarged vein (varicose vein) in the scrotum (Reference varicocele Opens New Window). Usually these are minor problems but may need to be evaluated by your doctor.
- Problems with the foreskin of an uncircumcised penis. Conditions that make it hard to pull the foreskin back from the head of the penis (Reference phimosis Opens New Window) or that prevent a tightened, retracted foreskin from returning to its normal position over the head of the penis (Reference paraphimosis Opens New Window) need to be evaluated.
- Reference Hypospadias. This is a common birth defect where the Reference urethra Opens New Window does not extend to the tip of the penis.
- Reference Undescended testicles Opens New Window (cryptorchidism). This occurs when one or both testicles have not moved down into the scrotum.
- An Reference inguinal hernia Opens New Window. A hernia occurs when a small portion of the bowel bulges out through the inguinal canal into the groin.
- A Reference kidney stone Opens New Window. A stone forms from minerals in urine that crystallize and harden. Kidney stones are usually painless while they remain in the kidney, but they can cause severe pain as they break loose and travel through narrow tubes to exit the body.
- A Reference sebaceous cyst Opens New Window. A cyst that is filled with a cheeselike, greasy material may develop beneath the outer layer of the skin in the scrotum.
Infections can occur in any area of the genitals, including:
- A testicle (Reference orchitis Opens New Window).
- The epididymis (Reference epididymitis Opens New Window).
- The urethra (Reference urethritis Opens New Window).
- The prostate (Reference prostatitis Opens New Window).
- The bladder (Reference cystitis Opens New Window).
- A simple hair follicle (Reference abscess Opens New Window) or deeper abscess in the scrotum that may involve the testicles, epididymis, or urethra.
- The genital area (Reference Fournier's gangrene).
- The head of the penis. The infection may occur under the foreskin. This is called balanitis.
Rashes in the groin area have Reference many causes, such as ringworm or yeast. Most rashes can be treated at home.
A rash may be the first symptom of a Reference sexually transmitted infection (STI) Opens New Window. If you may have been exposed to an STI, do not have sexual contact or activity until you have been evaluated by your doctor. This will reduce the risk of spreading a possible infection to your sex partner. Your sex partner may also need to be evaluated and treated.
Little boys may play with toys or other objects near their penis and accidentally cause an injury. Anything wrapped around the penis or an object in the penis needs immediate evaluation to avoid problems.
If you use a urinary catheter to drain your bladder, your doctor will give you instructions on when to call to report problems. Be sure to follow the instructions your doctor gave you.
Reference Check your symptoms to decide if and when you should see a doctor.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference March 15, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Reference David Messenger, MD