A penile fracture is an alarming injury that may occur during sexual intercourse. While the penis has no bones that can be broken, a fracture can happen when an erect penis is bent or hit while erect. It happens most often among younger men and requires emergency medical attention to prevent long-lasting damage. Here are the causes, symptoms, and treatment options available when a penile fracture occurs.
Causes of penile fracture
A penile fracture is a tear in the tissue below the skin that allows the penis to increase in width and length to produce a firm erection. A fracture’s caused by blunt force to an erect penis. Common causes include:
Energetic/traumatic masturbation: Penile fracture can happen when someone engages in extremely energetic masturbation.
Sexual activity with a partner: Penile fracture can happen when your penis slips out of your partner and thrusts against the area between the anus and the perineum or the pelvic bone. About 50% of fractures happen during intense sexual intercourse.
Falling onto your erection, rolling over onto your erection, or hitting your erect penis against something in an accident or other mishap.
Taqaandan: This is a Middle Eastern and Central Asian practice in which men bend an erect penis in order to make an erection go away or to change the shape and size of the penis.
Symptoms of penile fracture
A penile fracture is a medical emergency that may need surgery to prevent long-term damage. Seeking medical attention also helps determine the extent of the damage and find out if other organs such as the urethra have been affected. Here are the common symptoms:
- Bleeding from the penis
- Experiencing dark-coloured bruising to the penis
- Trouble urinating
- Hearing a cracking or popping sound
- Suddenly losing an erection
- Pain that varies from minimal to severe
- Bent penis
- Severe pain following the injury
Age: It’s most common among younger men.
Sex position: Certain sexual positions such as those with the woman on top or rear-entry positions increase the risk of penile fracture in men.
Treatment and recovery
Left untreated, a penile fracture can lead to permanent deformity of the penis, curvature in it, and erections or intercourse with a lot of pain.
Recovery time varies depending on the severity of the tear. The recovery period takes several days to a week, during which the patient must avoid any physical exertion including sports activity. Often, a person treated for a penile fracture will not be able to return to work for about two or three weeks.
The patient will not be able to lift heavy weights, drive or put any pressure on their pelvic muscles. This means no sexual intercourse during the recovery period. Antibiotics and pain relievers will be prescribed along with instructions to keep the wound clean and dry to prevent infections.
Some patients have difficulty regaining their ability to have an erection but with time they will be able to have an erection naturally.
Potential post-surgery complications include
- A curved penis
- Fistulas (unwanted openings)
- Erectile dysfunction
- Painful erection
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