Penis fractures are rare, but they certainly do happen. As of 2001, 10,331 cases of penis fracture have been reported in South Africa, as from 1935.
When a penis fracture occurs there is a traumatic tear to the corpus cavernousum, the cylindrical lining of the penis. The corpus cavernousum contains sponge-like erectile tissue that holds most of the blood during an erection.
Without immediate exam and treatment of a penis fracture, your chances of maintaining future erections are slim. In addition, a penis fracture may cause your penis to take on an unusual appearance. For instance, your penis may veer off at an angle, and that means no more Speedos for you.
Whether you have a disturbed scientific interest or if you feel like clenching your teeth in imagined pain, read on and learn a thing or two about penis fractures.
Penis fractures are a reality. To call it a “fracture” may be a inaccurate when talking about the penis, which has no bone, but the cracking sound, intense pain, and immediate swelling and bruising mimic fractures that occur in bones. Sometimes, blood may appear at the urethra, indicating damage to the urethra itself; this is a more severe type of penis fracture that requires involved surgery to repair.
Penis fractures usually occur when the penis strikes the pubic bone or the perineum of a partner during rigorous sexual activity. Rolling over in bed with an erect penis in the middle of the night has also been implicated as a way to fracture a penis. Penis fractures have also been reported as occurring when a man rushes to get clothed when the penis is erect — imagine THAT scenario.
Penis fractures most often occur when the sexual position requires the partner to be on top, but any blunt trauma that occurs against an erection can cause the injury. There is at least one report of penis fracture from a bicycle helmet strike, apparently because the victim had a ‘sports-induced’ erection. Partner abuse has also been reported, as well as unusual forms of masturbation, as causing penis fractures.
It’s important to note that a fracture would be close to impossible in a flaccid state.
Penis fractures are usually diagnosed upon exam and history. Tell your doctor precisely what was going on when the gruesome injury happened.
Often the penis takes on an ‘S’ shape after a fracture. If you can withstand the examination, your doctor will be able to feel an accumulation of blood from clotting at the ruptured site.
Bruising might be confined to the penis, but if the tear from a penis fracture is more involved, bruising might be present on the lower abdomen, scrotum and places in between.
An MRI, or a procedure known as a diagnostic cavernosography, should be performed to let you know if you have, in fact, experienced a penis fracture. A visual exam, combined with a history of what happened is usually enough to tell the doctor if your penis is fractured. Diagnostic tests yield more details about the extent of an injury.
Surgery is likely the best option when treating a penis fracture, as one study showed that nine men who were treated surgically had successful outcomes. All nine achieved normal erections after surgery.
The good news is that penis fractures are rare. We know you cannot really fracture your penis in the typical sense, but you can break the lining of the penis, causing intense pain and bruising. Immediate treatment is the only way to ensure your chances of maintaining erections in the future.
Ninety percent of men have no problems with intercourse following a penis fracture, but 5% have a slight curve to their penis. Treatment in the hospital might include sedation to prevent nocturnal erections or otherwise. Your doctor might also give you a sedative after hospitalization to prevent an erection.
The severity of the injury will dictate when you can resume having sex, but generally don’t try to get back in the saddle before six weeks have passed. Even with this very general guideline, you should always consult with your doctor.
The take-home message here is that it’s always best not to get too vigorous during sex — sure, you can call us hypocrites. However, penis fractures are a reality, albeit rare, and we don’t want you riding the bench instead of riding your man.