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COLUMN: Swelling after masturbation remains for four months after

Four months ago, after masturbating too long, I noticed that my penis swelled. After waiting for two days, the swelling gradually decreased but about 20 percent of the swelling is still there. The skin of the penis is loose and wrinkly. The swelling is like a ring around the penis. Also my penis now is pointed towards the left even when flaccid. All of that wasn’t there before. There’s been no pain. I can get erect and ejaculate but the penis looks abnormal for me. I’m really worried if there is some permanent damage. What should I do?

I highly recommend seeing a urologist — which is a doctor that specializes in male genitals — as soon as you can. I am not a medical doctor and cannot diagnose you, but what you are describing warrants a medical exam.

Masturbation and partnered sex usually do not result in swelling of the penis or a change in its pointed direction. This is a rare occurrence. There is something called penile fracture that can happen during masturbation, partnered sex, or even rolling over onto an erect penis.

What happens is that, when a penis is erect, the tube-like structures inside the penis called corpora cavernosa become firm, as they are filled with blood. If the erect penis hits against something — for example, accidentally hits against the outside of a partner’s body while thrusting in and out — then the lining around the tube may snap. Sometimes this may make a sound like a snap or a pop. From there, swelling and bruising may occur. Some people experience pain. It’s generally considered a medical emergency and can result in changes to the directional point of the penis and, sometimes, even to how the penis functions as with erections.

Again, I cannot tell you whether this is what happened to you or not, but what you do know is that something happened to you while masturbating that resulted in a swollen penis, a change in point, and changes to how your penis looks and feels that have lasted for months. As such, I want to strongly encourage you to see a urologist as soon as you can so that you can work together to care for your sexual and genital health.

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