Penile cancer is a rare disease in which cancer cells form in the tissues of the penis. It is most commonly diagnosed in men over the age of 60.
Penile cancer accounts for less than 1% of all cancer cases in the United States.
The primary cause of penile cancer is an infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV). It is often contracted through unprotected sexual contact.
Penile cancer is generally asymptomatic in its early stages, making it difficult to diagnose. Common signs and symptoms may include a discharge from the penis or a lump or mass on the penile shaft.
Penile cancer is often treated with tumor removal, chemotherapy, radiation, or a combination. Treatment may also involve removing the lymph nodes in the groin area.
Early treatment is key for penile cancer, as the disease can quickly spread to other organs if not caught early enough.
Possible risk factors for penile cancer include poor hygiene, smoking, advanced age, and weakened immune systems.
Penile cancer affects about 1 in 100,000 men worldwide yearly, which is generally more common in developing countries.
Penile cancer can be prevented by practicing safe sex, maintaining good hygiene, avoiding tobacco use, and getting the HPV vaccine.
Regular self-examinations of the penis can help detect penile cancer in its early stages.
The outlook for patients with penile cancer is generally positive; however, the prognosis is often determined by the cancer stage at diagnosis.