Peyronie’s Disease: What is it? Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

It is a disorder that affects the connective tissue that surrounds the erectile bodies of the male reproductive system.

The condition is caused by forming dense and fibrous scar tissue or plaque in the tunica albuginea of ​​the penis, the sheath surrounding the erectile tissue.

The resulting scars can cause pain in the penis, curvature, shortening, indentation, and erectile dysfunction.

Peyronie’s disease occurs when hard nodules, also called plaques, form in the layer of tissue that covers the vascular erectile tissue on the shaft of the penis.

This is a process that can cause severe penile flexion and shortening.

This disease interferes with erections and may curl enough to interfere with sexual activity.

This disease causes stress for both the man and his partner.


Several treatments are available for patients with Peyronie’s disease to help treat the curvature. However, none is “curative” because none can reverse this abnormal wound healing process.

Most therapies for Peyronie’s disease are designed to stop the extra curvature or straighten the penis so that the man can have a straight functional erection.

Peyronie’s disease is a disorder that affects approximately three percent of middle-aged and older men.

Causes of Peyronie’s disease

The exact cause of the disease is unknown; some experts believe that microscopic fractures during regular sexual activity can lead to this exaggerated reaction to wounding healing in patients with Peyronie’s disease.

Many researchers believe that the plaque of Peyronie’s disease can occur after the penis has been hit or bent, which causes bleeding inside the penis.

In addition to trauma to the penis, factors such as genetics can contribute to the disease.

The elastic in the layer of the two erectile chambers (or cylinders) in the penis can become more brittle over time, which can also cause an injury.


Due to scar tissue formation in the penis, with the presence of nodules or palpable plaques.

Patients with Peyronie’s disease may experience painful erections. A fibrous layer, a curvature or distortion, or shortening or narrowing of the penis during an erection are within the late symptoms.

These symptoms can lead to erectile dysfunction in severe cases by interfering with venous occlusion by inhibiting erection.

The problem can not be seen while the penis is soft.

In severe cases, the plaque makes the penis less flexible. The pain of Peyronie’s disease is usually mild and untreated.

This pain can only occur when an erection occurs.

The pain can be caused by forcing the penis to bend or bend during an erection.

In most cases, the pain diminishes with time, but the curvature of the penis may still be a problem.

Occasionally, the milder forms of the disease will improve without causing significant pain or permanent flexion. Peyronie’s disease can also make the erect penis shorter; this change can be permanent.


The diagnosis of Peyronie’s disease is usually made by taking a detailed medical history and performing a complete physical examination.

In some cases, an ultrasound may identify the hardened plaque on the penis.

A biopsy may be recommended in rare cases where a physical examination can not diagnose Peyronie’s disease.

During a biopsy, a small amount of cells is removed from the penile plaque and then examined under a microscope to help diagnose the condition and rule out other diseases, such as cancer.


The treatment recommended in the last stage is surgery because it allows for correcting acute deformations. Usually, a wide variety of treatments are recommended to minimize symptoms.

Among the most used treatments are:


Treatment is recommended by limiting medications such as vitamin E, tamoxifen, colchicine, potassium aminobenzoate, interferon, side effects, or poor response.

Medications often injected into the penis can be recommended, such as Xiaflex and Verapamil.

These treatments involve injections in the penis that induce collagenase activity, eliminating collagen from the fibrotic plaque.

Patients treated with Xiaflex can be supplemented with gentle penis exercises six weeks after treatment.

Non-surgical options:

Iontophoresis is a technique that uses a weak electrical current to administer medications through the skin.

This transdermal diffusion of verapamil and dexamethasone is an alternative for administering drugs inside the albuginea in Peyronie’s disease.

Lifestyle changes:

Lifestyle changes can reduce the risk of Peyronie’s disease. These include:

  • Give up smoking.
  • Reduce alcohol consumption
  • Do not use illegal drugs.
  • Exercise regularly


Surgery is the last resort of action in the case of severe penile deformity.

You must wait at least one year before surgery for Peyronie’s disease. Surgical solutions include:

  • They are shortening the unaffected side: Like the Nesbit procedure. When this procedure is performed, surgeons remove or adjust the excess tissue on the longer side. This results in a straighter and shorter penis.
  • Penile implants: In this procedure, remove the damaged area and replace the defect of the tunic with a graft of autologous tissue. These issues are not of the patient of human or animal origin or penile prostheses.

The shortening of the unaffected side is used when the curvature is less severe.

In about 15 percent of cases, Peyronie’s disease resolves spontaneously without treatment.

However, more than 40 percent of cases can get worse.

If treatment is necessary, oral medications, injections and surgery may be used.

Therapy for the condition aims to relieve symptoms and preserve erectile function.