human health

Stains on the Penis of A.Griguolo


The spots on the penis are a cutaneous symptom observable both in the presence of pathological conditions, and in the presence of non pathological conditions.

The spots on the penis, in fact, represent an alteration of the skin at the level of the male genital organ found both after an exaggerated use of intimate detergents or after too vigorous masturbation acts, and as a result of infections such as genital herpes, syphilis or scabies.

The spots on the penis can appear in various ways: they can have the appearance of flat patches, papules, vesicles filled with liquid, real bulges, ulcers, etc. To determine the precise appearance of the spots on the penis is the triggering cause.

During the diagnosis of spots on the penis (which is in itself simple and immediate), it is important to investigate the causal origin in depth, as it is on this that the subsequent treatment will be based.

What are penis stains?

The spots on the penis are cutaneous manifestations with variable characteristics, which in most cases depend on circumstances of little concern, such as an incorrect habit or an irritative phenomenon, and only in rare circumstances caused by serious illnesses and for which therapy is needed. appropriate medical


Depending on the cause, the spots on the penis may look like:

  • Simple flat patches (that is, not detected), more or less close, generally red in color;
  • Small reddish vesicles filled with liquid, which after a few days burst, releasing their contents and becoming scaly patches, always reddish in color;
  • Reddish single or multiple nodules, of hard consistency, which in a short time are transformed into single or multiple ulcers;
  • Red blotches detected, equivalent to papules ;
  • Real prominences ;
  • Smooth shiny and generally reddish plaques .

Where do they usually locate?

Stains on the penis can affect any part of the male genital organ; however, they usually locate on the glans, on the crown of the glans and / or on the foreskin .


The phenomenon of spots on the penis recognizes serious causes and less serious causes.

Going into more detail, in the list of factors capable of inducing the formation of spots on the penis include:

  • Too vigorous masturbation acts. Among the less serious causes of spots on the penis; the latter, in fact, disappear spontaneously within a short time (a few hours / a day at the most), provided you do not further stress the penis.

    How are the spots on the penis: they are simple slightly red blotches not detected.

  • Excessive use of intimate cleansers . Like too vigorous masturbation acts, even the exaggerated use of intimate cleansers is a cause of spots on the penis of slight clinical relevance, which can be resolved quickly when the penis is not subjected to continuous stress.

    As are the spots on the penis: initially they appear as red patches not detected; subsequently, they tend to become clearer, due to the cell renewal that affects the skin.

  • Poor personal hygiene . It is a more common habit in the youngest and among those living in areas of the world where sanitation is poor.

    How are the spots on the penis: they are simple undetected red patches of varying sizes.

  • Allergic reactions or irritations resulting from the use of certain intimate cleansers or in contact with certain materials or substances (eg: the latex of condoms). To define these circumstances, the appropriate medical term is contact dermatitis (inflammation of the skin induced by contact with substances that for the patient are irritants or allergens).

    How are the spots on the penis: in general, they are very close flat red patches.

  • Balanitis or balanoposthitis episodes. In medicine, the term balanitis indicates inflammation of the glans penis, while the word balanopostitis indicates the simultaneous inflammation of the penis and foreskin.

    The list of causes of balanitis and balanopostitis is similar and includes: some bacterial, viral or fungal infections, some deficiencies of the immune system, the aforementioned contact dermatitis and the so-called sexually transmitted infections (some of which will be discussed in subsequent points, as it causes stains on the penis even without causing balanitis or balanopostitis).

    How are the spots on the penis: they vary in relation to the triggering cause; in some cases, they are simple red spots not detected; at other times, they are small reddish blisters filled with liquid that burst after a few days, becoming scaly patches; in other cases, they are reddish ulcers.

  • Genital herpes . Due to herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV1) or 2 (HSV2), it is a sexually transmitted infection which, in addition to spots on the penis, can cause similar spots on: scrotum, pubic area, legs, buttocks, hands and mouth .

    Generally, the transmission of genital herpes occurs during unprotected sexual intercourse with people carrying the infection in question.

    How are the spots on the penis: they begin as red blisters filled with liquid; after which they burst and become scaly patches.

Genital herpes
  • Syphilis . It is the sexually transmitted infection due to the bacterium Treponema pallidum . In syphilis, spots on the penis represent one of the onset symptoms of infection and are known as sifiloma.

    How are the spots on the penis: initially, they appear as reddish nodules, of hard consistency; in the phases immediately following the onset, from nodules they turn into ulcers.

  • The scabies . Belonging to the great category of infectious diseases, it is the infestation of the skin sustained by the mite Sarcoptes scabiei hominis .

    Scabies is a very contagious infection, which mainly affects the flexor surfaces and folds of the skin.

    As are the spots on the penis: they are equivalent to papules, or detected patches.

  • The contagious mollusk . It is an infection of the skin and mucosa due to a virus of the poxvirus family (DNA virus).

    The contagious mollusc is very contagious, but, fortunately, has a benign evolution.

    It affects various parts of the body, not just the penis.

    How are the spots on the penis: they appear as protuberances of the skin.

  • Inverse psoriasis . It is a particular form of psoriasis that mainly affects the skin folds (in practical terms, the armpits, the inguinal region, the navel, the perianal area, the area below the breast in women, the genital area and the region of foreskin in men).

    How are the spots on the penis: they resemble smooth reddish spots, with a shiny appearance.

In general, the first circumstances in the list just provided (therefore, too vigorous masturbation, excessive use of intimate cleansers and poor intimate hygiene) are the most common causes of penile stains.

Symptoms and Complications

Depending on the cause, the spots on the penis can be associated with other symptoms, such as:

  • Itching in the penis . Penile spots caused by scabies, contagious molluscs, genital herpes and inverse psoriasis can be particularly itchy.
  • Pain in the penis . Penile pain is a symptom that generally accompanies penile spots due to syphilis, balanitis and balanoposthitis.
  • Loss of fluid, following their rupture (obviously, if they are blisters). This phenomenon is typical of penile spots due to genital herpes.
  • Similar spots in other areas of the body, neighboring and not. The causes of spots on the penis that produce spots in other parts of the body are syphilis, reverse psoriasis, genital herpes and scabies.
  • Fever It is an observable symptom when the cause of penile blemishes is an infection.
  • Dry skin at the site of interest. This symptom accompanies penile stains due to scabies or excessive use of intimate cleansers.

When should I go to the doctor?

Stains on the penis deserve the attention of a doctor, when there is a suspicion that they are due to an infection (whether this is a sexually transmitted infection or another infection) or to a non-infectious condition that requires appropriate care.

To understand when the spots on the penis fall into one of the two aforementioned circumstances, it is necessary to evaluate the associated symptoms (eg: the co-presence of fever is indicative of an infectious state).


The spots on the penis can be associated with complications, when they are due to important medical conditions (eg: syphilis) not treated promptly and in the right way.


The spots on the penis are a symptom of easy identification; for their observation, in fact, the observation of the penis is sufficient, on the occasion of a common objective examination against the genital area.

What is the next step to penis stain diagnosis?

After having observed the presence of spots on the penis, the diagnostic investigations must continue with the search for the triggering causes, since it is on the latter that the most adequate treatment planning is based.

Without the diagnosis of the causes that cause penile blemishes, it is impossible to plan the most effective therapy.

For the identification of the causes of penile blemishes, investigations such as medical history, blood tests and allergy tests are fundamental.


The therapeutic approach with which to deal with penile blemishes varies in relation to the cause causing the symptom in question, detected during diagnosis.

In medicine, such a therapeutic approach is called causal therapy .

Causal therapy is the set of treatments aimed at intervening on the triggers and risk factors of a certain symptom or a certain condition, in order to achieve healing.

Examples of Causal Therapy

  • If the spots on the penis are due to too vigorous masturbation acts, the therapy will simply consist in leaving the penis to rest for a few days and avoid repeating itself in certain excessive behaviors;
  • If the spots on the penis are due to the exaggerated use of intimate cleansers, the treatment will consist in limiting the use of the aforementioned products and waiting for the spontaneous "healing" of the affected skin area;
  • If the spots on the penis are due to genital herpes, the patient will need a treatment specifically designed for the management of the viral infection in progress; including the use of antiviral drugs, this treatment does not allow the definitive recovery from genital herpes, but it is nevertheless very effective in limiting the consequences.
  • If the spots on the penis are related to syphilis, the patient will need an immediate antibiotic treatment, in order to defeat the bacterium responsible for the infection, present in the body.


The prognosis in the presence of spots on the penis depends on the clinical importance of the triggering cause. In practical terms, this means that the less the clinical relevance of the condition causing the spots on the penis, the greater the chances of optimal healing.

Among the causes of spots on the penis that are less worrying, too vigorous masturbation and excessive use of detergents are reported; instead, among the most serious causes of spots on the penis, sexually transmitted infections deserve a mention.