Although it can be painful, irritating, and embarrassing to some people, eczema on the penis is not a serious medical condition.
The condition, also known as penile dermatitis, can be caused by contact with an allergen or an irritant. This is known as contact dermatitis. Penile eczema can easily be managed; however, it may lead to further infections if not taken care of properly. A man who notices a rash on his genitals, should also be checked for sexually transmitted diseases, as they can manifest in ways similar to dermatitis.
There are two types of contact dermatitis: allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis. Both are caused by contact with either an allergen or an irritant. There are a number of things that can act both as an irritant and an allergen - from latex used for making condoms to deodorants and chemicals used in soaps. When it comes to penile eczema, even the fabric softeners used when washing underwear can trigger a reaction.
Commonly, the symptoms of penile dermatitis are:
Penile dermatitis can be present on both the shaft and the glans. The skin reddens or becomes lighter in men with darker complexions. A rash develops on the affected area, usually followed by itching or even painful sensation. The skin becomes dry, may become scaly, and sometimes, blisters develop. All of this can cause significant pain and discomfort if trying to have sex while having a breakout.
Depending on the location of the inflammation, it may cause discomfort when urinating. If scratched, the skin in the affected area may break, which can cause infections and further discomfort.
Penile eczema is treated by:
A mild case of penile eczema will usually go away on its own once you remove the cause, so there would be no need for a medical course of treatment. If needed, a doctor may prescribe steroid creams that are used to deal with inflammation and itching. If the eczema leads to an infection, antifungals are used to deal with fungal infections, and antibiotics are used if the infection is bacterial.
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