Phimosis is a condition where a boy is born with a foreskin that is too tight to be pulled back over the glans (the head of the penis) and can last to puberty. Over time, the skin naturally retracts off the glans. Treatment may only be required if it persists after the foreskin has reached retractable levels or when the condition starts showing symptoms such as the head of the penis becoming red, painful or swells.
In case of paraphimosis, when the foreskin sticks behind the glans, blood circulation can be cut off. When this happens regardless of age, the patient needs to see a doctor right away.
There are many healthcare facilities that provide phimosis and paraphimosis treatment services in the United States. However, the patient and their loved ones must travel from their homes to reach these facilities. Medical insurance plans cover this type of treatment but does not cover travel expenses. You therefore need to make proper travel plans so that you do not incur hefty travel expenses.
If you already have a health facility in mind, you can go ahead and plan for your travel. You can also consult our list of health facilities that offer phimosis treatment services in the country. In case you are unable to meet your travel expenses, you can check our directory of charitable organizations that offer help in arranging cost-free travel for medical treatments.
There are two types of phimosis. These include the following;
Physiologic phimosis: Boys are born with tight foreskin and the skin naturally experiences separation with time. This condition is normal for uncircumcised boys and normally gets better when the boy is between five and seven years old, but can take a little more years.
Pathological phimosis: This is a type of phimosis that results out of infection, scarring or inflammation. In this case, if you try to forcefully retract the foreskin, it may lead to scarring, bleeding and psychological trauma for the boy and his parents. You should seek treatment if you notice difficulties, ballooning and pain during urination, or infection.
Phimosis can be caused by a variety of issues. Among the most common causes of phimosis include the following;
- Scar tissue. Infections can cause scars on the prepuce making the skin less loose. The tight tissue can make it hard to pull the foreskin back.
- Pulling and stretching. It is not advisable to move the foreskin with force. You should be gentle with it. If this is done, it can lead to tiny inflammations and tears that would finally lead to phimosis.
- Aging comes with wrinkles and looseness not only on the face but even on your foreskin. Individuals experiencing fewer erections are more likely to get phimosis.
- Medical conditions. Diabetes is known to cause balanitis, an infection that affects the head or tip of the penis. You should discuss this with your doctor for proper treatment.
On the other hand, paraphimosis can be caused by a variety of reasons. Among these include the following;
- Mishandling the prepuce. It is good to make sure that the foreskin is put back after washing or insertion of a catheter by your caregiver.
- The foreskin can be pulled back in order to have sex. In case it stays in that position for too long, it might swell so that it gets stuck behind the glans.
- Swelling and pain as a result of piercing the penis can prevent the prepuce from getting back to its position after being pulled back.
- Other penis problems. Other illnesses or conditions can result to problems with your prepuce. For instance, phimosis can cause paraphimosis.
In both phimosis and paraphimosis, the prepuce will remain stuck in one place, either over the tip or behind. However, phimosis can also have the following manifestations;
- While visiting the bathroom, the foreskin expands when peeing, bulging like a balloon. This can cause pain. You may also notice blood on the pee stream or in the toilet. You may also realize that the stream is weaker than normal.
- You may experience pain when erecting for sex
- You may experience infections on the urinary tract. These infections may cause bloody urine, pain, the urge to urinate despite your bladder being empty, pressure in lower abdomen
- Your prepuce may hurt
- The opening of your foreskin may experience a white ring that resembles a scar
- The head or the whole penis may have painful swelling
Where to Go for Phimosis Treatment
There are many healthcare facilities where one can go for phimosis treatments. These centers are equipped with the necessary equipments, competent doctors and support staff for comprehensive healthcare provision. One of the best hospitals in the US for phimosis treatment includes the following;
- Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford
This hospital has assembled a team of specialists and professionals that offer complete and comprehensive healthcare services that include phimosis and paraphrases treatments. If you are looking for best services in this area, plan your travel now.
Your doctor can usually figure out if you have one of these conditions by listening to you describe your symptoms and with an exam. He has probably seen cases like yours many times, so there’s no need to be embarrassed or shy.
Treatment of Phimosis
The doctor will be able to make a determination whether you have phimosis or paraphimosis by listening to the patient as he talks about the symptoms and physically examining you. Doctors usually encounter these problems all the time and there is therefore no need to feel shy or embarrassed.
For phimosis treatment, you an urologist can see you in an outpatient clinic and treat you depending on how severe your case is. Consideration of the causes of the condition will be weighed before offering proper intervention. The doctor may prescribe the following;
- Steroid cream to apply to the prepuce a number of times per day for a number of weeks to loosen the prepuce.
- Full or partial circumcision
In case of paraphimosis, the treatment will usually be provided in the emergency room. The doctor may choose the following activities on your penis;
- A solution may be applied in order to reduce penis swelling. The doctor will then loosen the prepuce from where it is positioned
- The doctor may use a needle piercing several holes on the prepuce to make ways for the fluids to drain thereby reducing swelling
- A slit may be made to loosen the prepuce
- You may finally get circumcised
Risks Associated with Phimosis
Patients with phimosis are more likely to develop cancer of the penis. Phimosis, if untreated for long, can result into more swelling, gangrene and finally you can lose your penis. The uncircumcised boys and men are not just more likely, but are the only ones at risk of getting both phimosis and paraphrases. These patients should consider being circumcised to put an end to this problem once and for all.
Who Can Go for Phimosis Treatment
Individuals who can go for phimosis treatments include those who are experienced the signs and symptoms of this condition. Others who should consider this includes the uncircumcised boys and adults.