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Chris asked...

Peyronie's disease

I believe I have peyronie's disease. How do I go about getting it put right?

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The answer

Hi Chris,

Peyronie's disease is a localized connective tissue disorder. This causes a bend in the penis that can make an erection painful. The condition may occur after a trauma to the penis, such as bending or hitting. However, in some cases the cause of the Peyronie’s disease remains unknown and it has been noted that it can also runs in families too.

In Payronie’s disease, scar tissue builds up in a hard lump or plaque that normally forms on the upper side of the penis, but may also occur on the bottom or side.

If you have a more significant bend in your penis, which may cause you pain or difficulty having sex, please see your GP or go to your local genitourinary medicine (GUM) clinic. The health professionals will be able to examine and diagnose you appropriately.

In terms of treating the Pyronies’s disease, the options are non-surgical or surgical approach. Various non-surgical treatments are available, including medicines and injections of steroids into the affected area. However, there is limited evidence of their effectiveness. In severe cases, it may be possible to treat Peyronie’s disease with surgery. However, doctors recommend waiting at least 12 months before considering surgery, as the condition can improve in some men without treatment.

Surgery may involve:

  • removing or cutting away the plaque and attaching a patch of skin or a vein to straighten the penis
  • removing an area of the penis opposite the plaque to cancel out the bend (this can lead to a slight shortening of the penis)
  • implanting a device to straighten the penis

There is also a relatively new therapy called Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT). This involves targeting sound waves at the plaque, generally using an ultrasound scanner. Patients who undergo this procedure have 3-5 sessions of therapy. While the schockwawe therapy is considered safe, there isn't enough evidence to prove its effectiveness.

Pending on your personal circumstances, your doctor might refer you to a specialist who will discuss with you the best treatment option for you, as outlined above.

We hope this information helps.

Answered by the Health at Hand nurses  

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