Peyronie’s disease is a condition that occurs with the growth of fibrous plaques and it is characterized as a presence of scar tissues in the penis. It is a common sexual disorder in men which results in curvature of the penis and makes it difficult for men to perform the sexual activity or we can say that it becomes impossible. The scar tissue forms in the tunica albuginea which is the fibrous envelope of the corpora cavernosa penis. When the hard lump develops in the erectile tissue of the penis, it is said to be Peyronie's disease. At the initial stage, it begins with the swelling or inflammation but as it progresses it converts into a lump on the upper side or the lower side of the penis.
The occurrence of Peyronie’s disease is generally a result of an injury or the repeated injuries in the penis. The exact cause of Peyronie's disease is not clear but it is believed that it can happen after the repeated bending and bumping of an erect penis. It leads to the tearing in the lining of the erectile tissue that causes swelling and does not heal normally. It can also lead the blood vessels to burst and interfere with the blood flow. Generally, an injury in the penis leads to an inflammation and it heals with time. But when it takes too long scarring takes place. Usually, men between the age of 45 to 60 are most affected but it is reported that younger and older men can also be attacked by this disease. Although this disorder is restricted in the penis, but sometimes some men suffering from Peyronie's disease deals with the connective tissue disorder in hands and in rare chances, in the feet. According to the research, around 30 % of men having Peyronie's disease develop fibrosis in the elastic tissues such as hands and foot.
Stages of Peyronie’s disease
Peyronie’s disease often goes through two stages, the acute phase, and the chronic phase
1. Acute Phase - The acute phase usually lasts for six to eighteen months as the plaque is already formed in the penis. The plaque is felt beneath the skin of the penis as a lump and at this stage, curving of the penis becomes worse and pain is accompanied by an erection.
2. The Chronic Phase - The chronic phase is the signal of the end of the growth of the plaque. The pain that a person experience during the acute stage ends and within one to two years, there is an improvement in the pain during erections.
According to the studies, in most of the people who enter the chronic stage, the disease remains unstable and unchanged. Only a few people experience the reactivation of the acute stage and it leads to the growth of many more plaque and it worsens the curvature.
The symptoms of Peyronie's disease can take time to develop or it can appear overnight. Some of the symptoms that a person can experience include
- Problems with erections
- Significant bend to the penis
- Shortening of the penis
Complications associated with Peyronie’s disease
1. Erectile dysfunction
Erectile dysfunction is the highly associated complication. People suffering from Peyronie's disease are more likely to have erectile dysfunction and it occurs due to the effect of plaque on the blood flow. Peyronie’s disease reduces the flow of blood in the penis region. Erectile dysfunction is a type of sexual dysfunction, in when men experience an inability to maintain or get proper erections during sexual intercourse. People suffering from erectile dysfunction leads to unsatisfactory sexual intercourse. There are medicines available to treat erectile dysfunction and Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra are the most recommended medicines by the doctors to treat this sexual dysfunction. It should be noted that the medicine should be consumed only after consulting the doctor.
2. Inability to have sexual intercourse
Peyronie’s disease is a chronic disease that adversely affects the penis. The plaque on the top of the penis causes the penis to bend upwards, bend downwards or on the underside. Sometimes the plaque can be formed in the center and limits the sexual intercourse. At an advanced stage, it can even lead to an inability to have sexual intercourse.
3. Relationship stress
Healthy sexual intercourse is vital to maintain the healthy relationship between the couple. When men are incapable to have satisfactory sexual activity, it affects the lives of both the partners and creates some problems in their lives. It brings stress to their relationship. Also, sometimes men feel embarrassed about his situation and do not talk about his issue with his partner. Rather he withdraws himself emotionally and physically. It further increases problems and stress in their relationship.
There are medicines and treatment that can help in treating Peyronie's disease. In case of long term and severe conditions, doctors recommend surgery. When the symptoms of this disease do not improve and the problems with erections persistently start interfering in sexual intercourses, the surgical options are given.