Peyronie’s Disease Treatment in Wilmington, NC
When scar tissue develops under the skin of the penis due to trauma or minor injury, Peyronie’s disease may occur. As the scar tissue forms the penis may become bent or indented during an erection, which can cause increased pain.
Dr. Kirby is an expert urologist committed to providing the highest quality care to patients throughout the Wilmington area in the diagnosis and treatment of Peyronie’s disease. If you live near Wilmington, Moorehead City, or Eastern North Carolina and are interested in alleviating unwanted side effects from Peyronie’s disease, contact our office in Wilmington today.
Symptoms and Causes of Peyronie’s Disease
Because Peyronie’s disease will have effects that are both tangible and visible, the symptoms are commonly noticeable to the naked eye. In over 70% of cases, the scar tissue will develop on the top of the penis causing it to bend upwards during an erection. If the scar tissues develops on the bottom or side of the penis, it will bend downward or sideways during an erection. In rare cases, the scar tissue may develop all around the penis, causing the shaft to narrow and become very hard.
If you are experiencing any of the following, you may be experiencing Peyronie’s disease:
- Pain during sex, or pain during an erection.
- Hard spots or lumps in the penis.
- Bends or curves in the penis.
- Narrowing or shortening of the penis.
Most often, Peyronie’s disease is caused by injury to the penis due to sports athletic activity, aggressive sex, or an accident of some sort. However, there have been cases in which the disease is part of a larger autoimmune issue. If the disease attacks cells within the penis, it can lead to inflammation and scarring.
Because the chances of getting Peyronie’s disease increases with age due to changes in the elasticity of the penis, men over the age of 50 are more commonly affected. In addition, men with a more active sexual lifestyle that may cause injuries to the penis, or men who have a family history of Peyronie’s disease have a higher chance of developing it over their lifetime.
Diagnosis of Peyronie’s Disease
With or without an erection, Peyronie’s disease can most often be diagnosed in a physical exam. If scar tissue is felt, you may be given an injectable drug to create an erection and check how your penis curves or narrows. In addition, an ultrasound or X-ray may be ordered to get an accurate location of the buildup of scar tissue. This will allow for a proper treatment plan to be designed.
How is Peyronie’s Disease Treated?
The overall goal of treatment is to reduce pain and strengthen the ability to have intercourse. If you are not experiencing pain, and having very little issues with penile curvature, you may not need treatment until the symptoms progress. In a few cases, the disease will resolve itself without any treatment.
Because there is a risk of erectile dysfunction associated with Peyronie’s disease, you may get recommended a change in lifestyle. This can include decreasing the amount of vigorous sexual activity or aggressive sports and quitting any smoking, illegal drugs, or alcohol consumption.
With medications and therapies, Peyronie’s disease can be effectively managed over time, pending the severity. Your urologist may prescribe a series of medications that may help inflammation or development of scar tissue. These treatments can include:
- Steroid injections
- Vitamin E
- Collagenase Injections
These treatments must be discussed with your doctor prior, as they will be highly dependent on other health factors.
If you are experiencing severe issues with penile curvature or pain, surgery may be recommended. The types of surgery will depend on the severity, but may include grafting or device implantation. Most commonly, the surgeries will include the following:
- Lengthening the area of the penis that curves.
- Placing a prosthetic device inside the penis.
- Shortening the opposite side of the penis from the scar tissue.