According to the Urology Care Foundation, doctors believe that about six percent of men ages 40 to 70 experience penis curvature, a condition called Peyronie’s disease. While it mostly affects men over age 50, it can also occur in men in their 30s and 40s.
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What Is Peyronie’s Disease?
In men with Peyronie’s disease, a buildup of scar tissue along the shaft causes the penis to curve. The curve is most noticeable during an erection and, while it can be mild, a severe curve can lead to painful erections and/or erectile dysfunction, and can make penetration difficult. These issues, in turn, can cause stress and anxiety.
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Phases of Peyronie’s Disease
Peyronie’s disease has two phases:
- Acute phase: This is when scar tissue forms, causing the curvature; this may happen slowly or quickly. You’re more likely to feel pain in this phase.
- Chronic phase: During this phase, scar tissue stops forming and the penis doesn’t curve any further. Pain also tends to go away. Depending on the severity of the curve, your doctor may recommend treatment.
Risk Factors for Peyronie’s Disease
While doctors know that a buildup of scar tissue causes the penile curvature of Peyronie’s, they don’t fully understand the cause of that buildup. Trauma from an accident, sports, or even sex can cause scar tissue to form, but men without prior injury can also have Peyronie’s.
The condition might have a genetic component. Men with a father or close family member who’s had the condition could have a higher risk of Peyronie’s disease. However, the overall risk of developing Peyronie’s is low.
To learn more about your risk of Peyronie’s disease, visit the UPMC Men’s Health Center or call 1-877-647-4636(4MEN). While there’s no cure for Peyronie’s, there are many treatment options available.
The UPMC Department of Urology treats all manners of conditions involving the urinary tract and male reproductive organs. We treat those disorders both in children and adults. We have a multifaceted team of physicians and researchers working together to provide the best care. We provide cutting-edge treatments, and we continue to lead research into even better methods for diagnosis and treatment. U.S. News & World Report ranks UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside as among the best hospitals in the country for urological care.