- What is penile cancer?
- What are the symptoms of penile cancer?
- I recently noticed some warts on my penis. Does this mean I have penile cancer?
- How will the doctor know if I have cancer?
- If someone is diagnosed with penile cancer, what are their options?
What is penile cancer?
Penile cancer is a disease in which malignant (cancerous) cells originate in the skin or tissue of the penis.
It is a rare form of cancer, and is more common in men who are not circumcised . (Circumcision is the surgical removal of the foreskin of the penis.). Cigarette smokers have a higher risk of developing penile cancer than non-smokers.
What are the symptoms of penile cancer?
- A growth on the penis. While these can be sore, they are often painless, and appear to be scaly or wart-like. They are often found near the tip of the penis.
- Changes in the colour or texture of the skin of the penis.
- Bleeding from the penis.
- Persistent, foul-smelling discharge from the penis.
If you notice any of these symptoms, visit your doctor immediately. As with all types of cancer, the earlier penile cancer is detected, the better the chance of recovery.
I recently noticed some warts on my penis. Does this mean I have penile cancer?
Not necessarily. It can be quite difficult to tell the difference between malignant (cancerous) growths on the penis, to other types of penile warts or sores. This is why it is imperative that you visit your doctor if you notice any kind of growth.
How will the doctor know if I have cancer?
If the doctor feels any lumps or believes that the penis doesn't look normal, they will refer you to a specialist who can carry out a biopsy to determine whether you have cancer or not.
A biopsy is when a small sample of tissue is taken from the penis and looked at under a microscope to see if there are cancerous cells present.
If someone is diagnosed with penile cancer, what are their options?
As with all cancers, there are three main options: surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy.
Surgery is the most common option in cases of penile cancer. There are a number of different types of surgery, including laser surgery, circumcision, and a penectomy (the amputation of the penis).
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