Penile Cancer

Definition

Penile cancer is a malignant growth found on the skin or in the tissues of the penis. Around 95% of penile cancers are squamous cell carcinomas which arise from normal skin.

Risk Factors

  • Being age 60 or older.
  • Having phimosis (a condition in which the foreskin of the penis cannot be pulled back over the glans).
  • Having poor personal hygiene.
  • Having many sexual partners.
  • Having Human Papillomavirus infection (HPV)
  • Using tobacco products.

Symptoms

Signs of penile cancer include:
• Redness of the penis
• Rash on the penis
• Foul smelling discharge from the penis
• Pain in the penis
• Growth or sore on the penis that doesn’t heal within four weeks (may look like a wart, ulcer, or blister), may or may not be painful
• Bleeding from the penis or from under the foreskin
• Change in color of the penis
• Inability to retract the foreskin

Treatment

Certain factors affect prognosis (chance of recovery) and treatment options.
The prognosis (chance of recovery) and treatment options depend on the following:
• The stage of the cancer.
• The location and size of the tumor.
• Whether the cancer has just been diagnosed or has recurred (come back).