Balanitis : Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors

Alternate Names : Balanoposthitis

Definition

Balanitis is an inflammation of the foreskin and head of the penis.

Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors

Balanitis is usually caused by poor hygiene in uncircumcised men. The inflammation can be due to infection, harsh soaps, or failure to properly rinse soap off while bathing. Several other diseases, including reactive arthritis and lichen sclerosis et atrophicus, can lead to balanitis. Men with uncontrolled diabetes are at risk of developing balanitis.

Pictures & Image

The male reproductive structures include the penis, the scrotum, the seminal vesicles and the prostate.

The penis is covered by a retractable hood of skin called the foreskin, or prepuce. It is the structure which is removed in the procedure known as circumcision.


Review Date : 9/22/2009
Reviewed By : Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; Louis S. Liou, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Urology, Department of Surgery, Boston University School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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