Peyronie’s disease (PD) can affect growth. Peyronie’s is characterized by the development of scar tissue within the tunica albuginea. Scar tissue makes the penis less elastic, which causes a deformity. According to the Asian Journal of Urology, PD is associated with “curvature, shortening, indentation and narrowing with a hinge effect.” The condition may have an impact on an individual’s quality of life and has a significant psychological effect on more than half of the men who are diagnosed with it.
Penile Curvature a Sign of Peyronie’s Disease
One of the main signs of Peyronie’s disease is a curve in the penis. A curved penis will have one short side and one side that is longer. A deformity caused by PD is associated with functional length reduction of the penis because one of the sides of the penis will have more elasticity than the other. According to the Cleveland Clinic, the disease is thought to be caused by “repeated minor injuries to the penis during intercourse.”
Peyronie’s Disease Symptoms
The symptoms of PD disease may be mild, moderate, or quite severe. The symptoms may come on suddenly or progress over a matter of weeks or even months. A man’s progression of symptoms may include:
- A small ache or discomfort in the penis
- A lump forming in the area where the discomfort occurs
- As the plaque spreads, the penis may start to kink or bend towards the side that is affected
- Erections may become uncomfortable or even painful
- Erections aren’t as hard as usual
The corpora cavernosa are the erectile tissue of the penis. Healthline reports that the corpora cavernosa looks like two rods that run the length of the penis. Inside of these rods are blood vessels. When a man is sexually aroused, the nerves in the penis will allow the relatively empty blood vessels to open and start to fill with blood. This is what causes an erection. The National Institute of Diabetes and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) reports that plaque builds up in the “thick elastic membrane called the tunica albuginea. The tunica albuginea helps keep the penis stiff during an erection.”
PD Risk Factors Men Can Watch Out For
The NIDDK reports that a man is at an increased risk of developing Peyronie’s if he:
- “Engage[s] in vigorous sexual or nonsexual activities that cause micro-injuries to the penis
- [Has] certain connective tissue and autoimmune disorders
- [Has] a family history of Peyronie’s disease
- [Is] older
- [Has] diabetes and erectile dysfunction
- [Has] a history of prostate cancer treatment with surgery”
A man who believes he may be at risk of developing PD disease can discuss with his doctor about how to ward off the disease.
Medical Tests Used to Diagnose Peyronie’s
There are several tests that can be done in order to diagnose Peyronie’s disease. A medical and sexual history will be taken at an appointment with a doctor. Mayo Clinic reports that most often, a doctor will conduct a physical examination of the penis. From this examination, the doctor will be able to determine whether a man is affected by PD. An ultrasound of the penis might also be completed in order to determine the extent of the damage.
Clinically Proven Alternative Treatment for Peyronie’s Disease
In some cases, Peyronie’s may simply go away on its own and no medical intervention will be necessary, according to the NIDDK. It’s unknown why this occurs in some men and not others.
An injection into the plaque may be used to target the area where the issue is by trying to soften the plaque or relax the blood vessels. Surgery may be used to remove the plaque from the penis. Penile traction devices may also be useful in treatment for Peyronie’s disease.
For those suffering from this disease, alternative treatments are available as well. One such alternative treatment that may be useful is GAINSWave® therapy, which uses high-frequency shockwaves in order to enhance sexual function. The shockwaves may help break down micro-plaque in the penis, which can help with the symptoms of Peyronie’s.
The GAINSWave® treatment is:
- Clinically proven
- Drug and surgery-free
- Performed in an office by a doctor
- Completed in 20 to 30 minutes with no downtime
- Expected to cause no side effects in patients
Men interested in this treatment can reach out to a GAINSWave® therapy provider. Men suffering from PD can take on their sex lives again with enthusiasm thanks to shockwave therapy.