Balanitis: When should one seek medical help?
Balanitis is an inflammation of the glans (head) of the penis. It is caused as a result of excessive growth of organisms, which are usually present on the skin of the glans.
Consult a doctor if you have one or more of the following symptoms suggestive of some significant medical problem:
- Redness of skin around the head of penis (glans).
- Swelling and pain of the head of penis.
- Irritation, discomfort and soreness on the head of penis.
- Thick discharge beneath the foreskin.
- Rash or sores around the glans (head of penis).
- Itchiness around the head of penis.
- Foul or unpleasant odour.
- Pain or discomfort while passing urine.
- Difficulty in pulling the foreskin (in severe cases, it may be impossible to pull the foreskin back).
If you have Balanitis, you may have one or more symptoms and not necessarily all of them. The severity of symptoms may vary from mild (small patch of redness confined to part of the skin surface of the glans) to severe (whole glans becoming red, swollen and painful). If you have these symptoms, it does not necessarily mean that you have balanitis as similar symptoms can be caused in many other diseases. Your doctor can examine and determine the cause of your symptoms and treat them accordingly.
If you have Balanitis, consult your doctor if:
- The symptoms fail to respond to treatment in a few days.
- You have repeated episodes of Balanitis.
Who to consult
Health professionals, who can be consulted to evaluate your symptoms include;
- General physicians.
- Family doctor.
- Physician assistants.
Source: Expert Content Feb 15, 2012
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