What are pearly penile papules?
Pearly penile papules are a string of raised bumps around the penis head's rim. These nodules resemble a string of pearls, hence their name. Often they are confused with genital warts or other infections but in truth these lesions are not contagious, infectious or malignant. In fact aside from the embarrassment or emotional discomfort that they may cause the individual, there is no medical reason to remove them. Many men however place great weight on the appearance of their penises.
In addition they feel uncomfortable in sexual situations when they have the condition and fear that their partner may assume that the papules are contagious. This results in them not being able to perform in sexual situations or simply avoiding them totally. Logically most men with the condition would prefer that they be removed.
What is the best way to treat them?
In the past the removal of pearly penile papules has been rather unsuccessful. Methods used included circumcision, cryotherapy, podophyllin and a variety of home techniques including the application of various creams or toothpaste to the lesions. More recently doctors have used the more effective treatments of electrodessication and carbon monoxide laser.
However, the better, less invasive and more cost effective way to treat pearly penile papules is radiofrequency surgery has been developed recently. This is due to the fact that the treatment uses a small hand piece which allows precision. It also makes use of radio waves and therefore results in minimal damage to surrounding tissue usually leaving no scars.
What does radiofrequency surgery entail?
One treatment of radiofrequency surgery is all that is required to remove pearly penile papules. It is not painful and one needn't take any time off of work either. The patient is treated with a local anaesthetic of lidocaine cream and therefore needn't be admitted to hospital either. The treated area will look red, scabby right after procedure that will heal within seven to ten days.
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