Understanding The Causes of Peyronie's Disease: Let’s fight the curve
Updated: Oct 12, 2022
What’s up guys, It’s Rich, and today I want to talk about a very frustrating and embarrassing topic that some men deal with; Peyronie’s disease. Now before you start freaking out about what it is and if you have it, Peyronie’s disease in simple terms is the unusual bending or curvature of the penis.
Although some men are born with a slight natural curvature to their penises, not all “curved” penises mean it’s a result of Peyronie’s disease. There is actually a percentage of guys out there who were just born with a “natural” curve to their penis. But, should it be a concern? Yes and no. Most medical professionals will say that a slight curve should not be alarming.
However, the guys that weren’t born with a natural curve in their penis and all of a sudden developed a noticeable curve, pain, or erectile dysfunction from it, should read further to understand the causes of Peyronie's disease and what you can do to treat it.
Let’s fight the curve together!
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What is Peyronie’s disease?
Peyronie’s disease is caused by the development of fibrosis scar tissue or plaque under the skin of the penis. And, because of this, the penis may curve around the plaque/scar tissue.
This disease is diagnosed with a penile exam by a professional.
But, you might be able to “feel” little nodules on your own by running your fingers along your shaft for hard rigid spots that don’t feel natural.
Curvatures can happen at any angle too! The penis may curve upwards if the scar tissue is formed on the upper side of the penis, downwards if the scar tissue is under the penis, or sideways if the plaque is on either side of the penis.
Scar tissue can also develop on both sides of the penis. Curvature from a lot of fibrosis scar tissue may also lead to a loss of length in penis size! When scar tissue is developed all around the penis, it may bend the penis like the neck of a bottle or the middle of an hourglass. This is called bottle-necking.
Symptoms of Peyronie's disease
While the bending or curvature of the penis is the most common symptom of Peyronie's disease, here are some other symptoms that can be an indicator of Peyronie's disease:
Noticeable plaque/scar tissue at the site of the bend
Pain during sex or even with an erection
Erectile Dysfunction (Inability to get a firm erection because of the scar tissue/plaque build up is preventing adequate blood flow from circulating properly)
Indentation of the penile shaft at the site of scar tissue (Bottlenecking)
Peyronie's disease has two distinctive phases:
Acute phase: This is the most painful phase with symptoms lasting between 18 to 24 months.
The chronic phase is where the pain is not as painful, but the scar tissue is more resistant to the treatment. A calcium buildup may start to develop in the tissue in some cases.
What causes Peyronie's disease?
Peyronie's disease is typically caused by trauma or injury to the penis. However, for some guys, it’s still debatable as to what had caused their Peyronie’s disease because they don’t recall an injury to their penis.
As research is still being conducted by scientists, you should also consider these potential risk factors that may cause Peyronie’s disease. Any of these activities may put you at a higher risk of developing Peyronie’s disease.
Men who tend to have vigorous or rough sex are at a higher risk of damaging their penis during sex. One wrong slip or bend can start the process of scarring/micro-plaque build up.
***Slow it down guys and don’t do any crazy positions that you know your body and size can’t do.
Some physical activities like sports may put you at risk for minor injuries to the pelvic region.
You need to be careful and wear proper attire. Although you’re not erect during sports like you are during sex, an injury to your flaccid penis may onset potential symptoms of Peyronie’s disease. So be careful!
Men with a family history of Peyronie's disease may develop the disease as experts believe it may run in families, and genetics may also play a role in the risk factors.
Men over the age of 40 are more prone to injuries, and slower healing as the tissues around the pelvic region get weak with aging. So, the tissues are more prone to develop scar tissue/plaques and may take more time to heal.
ED with diabetes
Men with erectile dysfunction combined with diabetes are more prone to develop Peyronie's disease. Experts believe the risk may be 4 to 5 times higher than the people without these diseases/dysfunctions.
Men with a history of prostate cancer are more likely to develop erectile dysfunction after the treatment, especially treatment with surgery. While the treatment itself doesn't cause lumps and plaques, the possibility is higher due to the surgery and weakening of the tissues in the pelvic region.
If you have a history of an autoimmune disorder or connective tissue disorder, you might be at risk of developing Peyronie's disease.
An autoimmune disorder is when your body is confused between a foreign cell and can make your cells attack your own body and organs. It may attack your tissues around the penis and break them, resulting in plaques and buildup.
Connective tissues separate tissues and muscles. People suffering from this disease are at a higher risk of developing lumps and plaques in the hands and feet. Peyronie's disease may play a part in developing connective tissue disorder and vice versa. However, there is still more research being conducted to determine this correlation.
Having Peyronie’s disease is nothing to be ashamed about
Peyronie's disease can affect both a man’s sex life and his mental health:
Erections can often be painful
Intercourse may also be an issue
Creates distress and anxiety in the men
Fertility issues due to curvature of the penis
Creates Sexual difficulties with their partner(s)
Penile diseases and dysfunctions are often considered “shameful” to discuss openly, and men tend to suffer in silence instead of getting help. But, as cases of Peyronie's disease are increasing and there is more awareness about the topic, guys shouldn’t give up hope.
There are quite a handful of Peyronie’s disease treatments available now then there were years ago.
Treatment options for Peyronie's disease
Not all the men suffering from Peyronie's disease need treatment. Most of the mild cases improve and heal with time without any medication or treatment. Treatments are prescribed to people with severe symptoms and extreme pain.
If you are suffering from Peyronie's disease, unfortunately, there is no magical pill for the disease that will make it go away in a day. However, the symptoms can be minimized, and the pain can be eased by these treatment options.
Acoustic wave therapy for Peyronie’s disease may be a treatment option for you!
With new and improving technology over the years, I think we may have found a solution to help combat the curve and help you gain confidence in the bedroom. Acoustic wave therapy has been proven to break down micro-plaque and restore blood flow to the penis.
It’s been used for the past few decades as a way to help reverse the effects of erectile dysfunction in most men. It has also been proven in multiple studies that wave therapy has a higher efficacy to treat erectile dysfunction than sildenafil and other erectile dysfunction treatments.
With micro-plaque/scar tissue being the main problem while having Peyronie's disease, a man could try applying acoustic wave therapy treatment on the affected area. The soundwaves from an acoustic wave device may help break down plaque build up while promoting blood flow into the area for healing.
BDE Style recommends The Phoenix at-home acoustic wave therapy device because it can be used at home without a medical background. It’s also a private and quicker way to treat it on your own while even treating early symptoms of ED, if you haven’t already started to develop this yet.
Penile traction devices for correcting the curve
Guys who experience a loss in penis length find that this is the most devastating consequence from Peyronie’s disease. But, to help aid in length restoration, there are also devices on the market that can help restore length.
According to the Mayo Clinic penis traction devices or stretchers have been proven with basic science and clinical data that it can help men fix curvatures or bends in their penises. There are also tons of other studies from other reputable sites that have data that shows that adding penile traction therapy can do more than just fix curvatures to a certain degree.
Research has shown that continuous extension of the fibrous plaque causes significant increases in collagenase and metalloproteinases, and, ultimately, to fibrous plaque softening and extension. Some guys also see a size increase by using penile traction devices.
Although penile traction devices are also used for penis enlargement or enhancement there is also a risk because some guys incorporate other ancient techniques like weight hanging and jelqing in conjunction with penile traction. So if you’re a guy into male enhancement, a good suggestion would be to focus on the curve first and then focus on your own agenda of length gains after (But at your own risk).
And, to be clear, penile traction therapy is one of the safest ways to treat Peyronie’s without undergoing the knife(surgery). Sometimes surgery may result in more loss of penile length and infection. So always go the safer and cost effective route first!
There are plenty of penile traction devices on the market. Any of them are good and we always recommend you do your research first on whatever traction device you look into.
However, we recommend The Phallosan forte system as one of the best traction devices because it’s comfortable, safe, discreet under clothing and they are backed up by scientific research and data. You can check out our review of The Phallosan Forte here as it’ll break down the benefits, costs, clinical data, videos and more.
Vitamin E Supplements
Vitamin E supplements taken orally have been considered as a way to help manage the symptoms of Peyronie's disease. But, there is not enough information or significance in datasets that show it can help the pain, curvature and plaque reduction. Vitamin E itself has the ability to help maintain elevated nitric oxide levels and do other things, but even with blood flow, the penis will need a lot more than that to fight the curve. If you ask us, vitamin E supplements should just be used as a compliment to any other treatment options.
Oral medicines like NSAIDS(For pain/inflammation) or potassium para-aminobenzoate (Plaque reduction for Dupuytren’s contracture) have been used to treat the symptoms of the disease. However, it’s important to point out that every man can experience Peyronie’s disease differently. So, using any medication that promises plaque reduction may work good for one man, but not another guy. You may need to consult a doctor before taking any medicine and know the side effects of the one you are prescribed.
Injections in the penis for Peyronie’s disease
Injections or shots can be injected directly into the scarred tissue or plaques to break the calcium buildup or heal the tissues fast. Various medicines have been used in this treatment; however, more research is needed.
Men having severe pain and sharp bending may be advised to get the surgery. This is for extreme cases where the patient has unbearable pain or a sharp bend to the penis. It is also advised to the patients who can not hold the erection long enough to have intercourse to get a penile implant.
Any of these methods should be advised carefully as not one thing works for everyone in this case. You should always consult a professional and refrain from self-diagnosing or self-medication.
Does Peyronie’s disease ever truly go away?
If you can treat it in the acute phase early on, there is hope that you can manage the symptoms before they get worse. Even with more severe cases, you can still find any slight improvements in blood flow, curvature and length gains to be a success.
Although other reputable sites suggest that there is “no cure” to Peyronie’s, we think that you need to exhaust your treatment options first before considering surgery or anything that is irreversible.
At the same time, you also have to understand that the body grows older every day. Micro-plaque constantly fills the arteries in our bodies from poor lifestyle choices. Even if you treat it and you feel like it's almost gone or completely gone, it may come back because our bodies get older and we need to take care of them by incorporating healthier lifestyle choices and Peyronie’s disease management routines.
Emotional Tips for managing Peyronie's disease
As we mentioned Peyronie's disease does not have a definite cure, living with it can put an emotional strain on a man and his relationships. This creates lots of frustration and stress. Most guys with Peyronie’s disease tend to avoid intimacy with their partners, lose interest in sex, and withdraw emotionally as this can take a hit to their confidence.
Here are some emotional tips for managing your sex life while having Peyronie's disease.
Give your body time to heal
In minor injury cases, the lumps and plaques heal themselves with time. If the symptoms are mild to moderate, give your body time and space to heal itself. Refrain from heavy physical activity and vigorous sex and let your body rest and heal. We know it sucks to not have sex because of an injury, but healing time is important and when you’re fully recovered that period of stress and sexual frustration will be forgotten.
Reach out for help
Sexual problems, especially for men, have been taboo, and men hesitate to seek help. Peyronie's disease is a physical issue and not something shameful or a matter of embarrassment. Reach out to your professional health care provider for professional help.
It might be a good idea to seek mental health help from a therapist to manage your stress levels and protect your mental health during this phase.
Open up to your partner
Open communication is the fundamental part of a relationship. It's very important to have open communication with your partner, especially when you have sexual problems like Peyronie's disease. Tell them about the problem so they can be more careful and mindful of the symptoms. Pulling away or not showing interest in sex will only lead your partner to distancing themselves from you as well. Fight the curve together!
Educate yourself of the symptoms and all the possible treatment options. Learn about the cautions and steps to take when suffering from the disease. It can be a good idea to involve your partner in this process to make them aware of this at the same time.
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