Did you know that over 6.3 million bone fractures occur in the United States annually? That’s approximately 2 to 3 people suffering from bone injuries out of every 100 individuals.
You may already be familiar with the common types of bone-related physical injuries, such as sprained ankles and broken arms. But beyond that, another rare but very possible traumatic injury a man can become afflicted with is a penile fracture.
Don’t be mistaken, however. The penis is not a bone, nor are there bones within the male sexual organ. A penile fracture occurs when the corpora cavernosa and the penile sheath develop a rupture. Consequently, this injury can lead to lifelong problems if not properly dealt with.
While the idea of a penile fracture is alarming, there are many avenues to manage and potentially fully recover from this acute development. With that said, let’s look at the symptoms, causes and treatments for a penile fracture.
What Is a Penile Fracture?
A penile fracture is when the corpora cavernosa and the penile sheath get injured through force or trauma, leading to severe pain and loss of erectile function.
The corpora cavernosa is a vital part of the male reproductive system. It’s composed of three sponge-like cylinders that are filled with blood during an erection. Needless to say, this part facilitates the attainment of an erect penis.
The penile sheath is a thin layer of connective tissue that acts as a protective layer for the corpora cavernosa. When the penile sheath is ruptured, the corpora cavernosa can be damaged and bleed.
Symptoms of a Penile Fracture
The following signs and symptoms may indicate the possibility of a penile fracture:
- Immediate pain in the penis (mild to severe)
- Sudden loss of erection
- A popping or cracking sound
- Dark-colored or violet bruising on the penis
- Inflammation of the penile shaft
- Urination difficulties
- Blood in the urine or the penis tip
- Erectile dysfunction
Certain symptoms of a penile fracture need to be present in order for doctors to diagnose the condition as a penile fracture.
For instance, if you don’t hear a popping sound, research suggests that you may be diagnosed with another condition.
Moreover, ruptures in the vein and penile arteries aren’t always necessarily penile fractures.
In order to get treated for this condition, a medical professional will conduct a series of imaging tests to confirm the diagnosis. Urgent care is recommended to avoid allowing the disease to progress and turn to permanent erectile dysfunction or Peyronie’s disease.
Causes of a Penile Fracture
Penile fractures are a relatively rare phenomenon, affecting only 1 in 100,000 men according to a recently published The Journal of Sexual Medicine article.
With that said, most of the occurrences are caused by traumatic injuries of some form. This may include:
- Rough masturbation
- Rough sexual intercourse where the penis is bent under some force
- Sports injuries
- Vehicular injuries
- Rolling over in bed with an erect penis
- Falling with an erect penis
Among the aforementioned causes, the most common cause of penile injury by far is during sexual intercourse.
Vigorous thrusting of the perineum or pubic bone can lead you to break your penis, particularly the pubic bone. However, it may also occur during non-rough sex, with the injury occurring due to the penis hitting a bone or blunt object.
When the injury is left untreated, a plethora of complications may arise. Erectile dysfunction, for instance, can be a permanent condition you’ll end up facing if you don’t escalate a penile fracture to the doctor.
Treatment Options for a Penis Fracture
Treating a penile fracture consists of both at-home and clinical remedies.
Visiting the emergency room is necessary upon first realization of pain in the penis, but once the diagnosis is confirmed, the patient can manage symptoms on an outpatient basis.
Here are the at-home treatments doctors may prescribe to someone suffering from a penile fracture:
- Ice pack treatment: Applying an ice pack wrapped in a cloth to the affected region for 10 minutes can help reduce swelling and pain.
- Anti-inflammatory medication: A foley catheter is a device that’s used to assist patients to urinate without adversely injuring the penis.
- Foley catheter usage: These medications are often prescribed to lessen the pain felt and swelling from the injured penis.
While these at-home remedies can help mitigate and manage symptoms, it’s not meant to be used as a standalone treatment.
There have been cases wherein patients felt more pain and heightened curvature due to the use of exclusive at-home treatment. Therefore, a doctor’s supervision is required.
Some clinical interventions penile fracture patients may undergo include the following:
- Penile fracture surgery: Surgical repair and stitching of the penile skin can provide positive outcomes to patients to a greater extent than at-home remedies. In particular, this procedure can close penile lacerations, stop bleeding from damaged vessels and get rid of blood buildup caused by the fracture.
- RestoreWave therapy: Patients with ED caused by penile fracture may turn to RestoreWave therapy, also known as acoustic wave therapy. This is a non-invasive treatment option that uses sound waves to increase blood flow and restore natural nerve sensation.
- ED therapy: Similar to acoustic wave therapy, ED therapy, or the systemized combination of various gels, creams, and injections, can also restore penile function back to its normal functioning.
It’s important to note that a penile fracture rarely goes away on its own. When left untreated, you’ll be susceptible to contracting a number of conditions such as chronic pain, arteriovenous fistulas, and sexual dysfunction.
Take proactive measures to safeguard your sexual health today by getting in touch with a licensed doctor.
Get Superior Medical Treatment at Orlando, Florida’s Top Men’s Clinic Today
A penile fracture can cause painful erections at its worst, and a total absence of erectile functioning at its best.
Neither of these conditions is favorable, especially for men with once-active sex lives.
If you want to step out of the shadows of penile fracture and put a stop to its progression, you’ll need to see a licensed doctor to treat your fractured penis.
Need assistance? Premier Men’s Medical Center in Orlando has a friendly roster of licensed medical professionals and is more than happy to assist your male health needs.