Penis rash can be an embarrassment for a man, especially if he is presenting his penis to a partner for the first time. Since the presence of a penis rash may indicate a possible penis health issue – including the possibility of an STI – it’s no wonder that a partner may change their mind about sex if they notice obvious skin irritation. Yet many times a penis rash is harmless to a partner – and such is the case when angiokeratomas are responsible for the rashy appearance.
“Angiokeratoma” is a rather off-putting name and one which may cause a person to panic; however, in most cases men with this condition don’t need to worry about serious health consequences.
Angiokeratomas are benign skin lesions; typically they appear in older adults, but they can appear at any age, including childhood. They have an appearance similar to that of a wart, and their coloring most often ranges from dark red to black. Some are papule sized (measuring 5 mm or less), while others are classified as plaque sized (6mm or larger).
An angiokeratoma tends to have a hard surface; in some instances, it may present as a “pebbly” surface. It retains its color when pressed (unlike some other rashes, which may fade somewhat when pressure is applied to them). Although an angiokeratoma may appear all by itself, when it is part of a penis rash, it typically appears in multiples – sometimes numbering in the dozens.
While angiokeratomas may present as a penis rash, they also are often found on a man’s balls rather than on his penis.
Why do angiokeratomas occur? They form due to clots in nearby blood vessels, which cause the vessels to extend closer to the upper layer of skin. Skin cells form over the extended blood vessels, and the combination of the vessels and the skin cells creates the hard, lumpy form of the lesion.
There are fortunately no health effects associated with angiokeratomas; however, sometimes they may rupture (due to rough handling during sex, scratching, rubbing against coarse fabric, etc.) and bleed a bit.
Since they don’t present a health risk, most doctors don’t recommend treatment. But in some cases, a man may find they mar the appearance of his penis to the extent that they affect either his self-esteem and self-confidence or his success in obtaining sexual partners. A man may opt to have them treated for cosmetic reasons. In such cases, argon laser therapy may be employed as one way of removing the lesions. Cryotherapy, in which the lesions are essentially frozen off via application of liquid nitrogen, is another option for removal. In some instances electrocautery, in which heat is used as a lesion is scraped off, may be recommended.
Because doctors don’t really know why certain clotted vessels will create angiokeratomas, there aren’t really any recommended procedures for preventing their formation.
That said, maintaining appropriate penis health is a good way to minimize a penis rash, even if angiokeratomas may be the cause. Men interested in penis health would do well to regularly apply an excellent penis health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin). Since many penile dermatological issues can be traced back to dry skin problems, keeping penis skin hydrated is essential. A crème with a high-end emollient (such as Shea butter) combined with a natural hydrator (such as vitamin E) places the penis in a prime position to maintain proper moisture. It also helps to use a crème with L-arginine, an amino acid that keeps blood vessels open and flowing. With the right penis health crème, the penis is better able to resist the causes of a common penis rash.