Phimosis means that the foreskin, which protects the glans, is too narrow, so that the man can not uncover his glans. Sometimes that is painful. What are the causes and what solutions exist?
Who Is Affected by Phimosis?
There are two forms of Phimosis, Phimosis in very young children and in adults.
In the first case, this is a congenital abnormality that occurs in the vast majority of infants. The foreskin sticks to the glans, which prevents the child from uncovering his glans. In general, Phimosis naturally disappears at age 3 or 4, namely at the first erective phases.
In the second case, Phimosis occurs in adult (often older) men who initially had no problem in uncovering their glans. A small fibrous ring forms under the foreskin. This is often a light hardening, making the foreskin less elastic. This type of Phimosis can have various causes: poor hygiene,or skin diseases.
What Are the Consequences of Phimosis?
In general, Phimosis has no consequences for very young children. But if the child still suffers at 5 or 6 years of age, it can lead to problems. The child then has difficulty urinating and gets painful erections. It must also be able to uncover its glans to clean the penis. Otherwise, it may involve small macerations (softening of the tissue) under the foreskin. The result is that the glans will eventually become inflamed (balanitis) and turn red.
In adults Phimosis causes about the same symptoms: difficulty urinating ( dysuria ), painful erections that can seriously disrupt sexual intercourse, and inflammation of the glans. Phimosis may also increase the risk of penile cancer in adults. That is why it is important to consult a urologist if you have Phimosis.
Which Solutions Exist?
For children, a cortisone ointment is recommended, which is applied to the top of the penis (the glans). The ointment detaches the foreskin from the glans. The child can gently expose his glans – using an ointment that numbs locally – and slide the foreskin again.
In older children (older than 5 or 6 years) and adults, the doctor usually proposes a circumcision or circumcision. Part of the foreskin, or the entire foreskin, is circumcised. This makes cleaning the penis easier.
If the Phimosis is due to a skin disease of the lichen planus type, the doctor prescribes a special antiviral for local use.
Both in children and in adults it is essential not to force the head in a forced or brutal manner. That can lead to paraPhimosis or the ‘Spanish collar’, a reverse Phimosis.
Someone with paraPhimosis can not bring the foreskin back over his head. The foreskin then encases the glans, causing a painful swelling.