Penis Disorders (cont.)

What are the symptoms of penile cancer?

Symptoms of penile cancer include growths or sores on the penis, abnormal discharge from the penis, and bleeding.

What treatments are given for penile cancer?

Surgery to remove the cancer is the most common treatment for penile cancer. A doctor may take out the cancer using one of the following operations:

  • Wide local excision takes out only the cancer and some normal tissue on either side.
  • Electrodessication and curettage removes the cancer by scraping the tumor with a curette (thin, long instrument with a scraping edge) and applying an electric current to the area to kill cancer cells.
  • Cryosurgery uses liquid nitrogen to freeze and kill the cancer cells.
  • Microsurgery (Moh's surgery) is an operation that removes the cancer and as little normal tissue as possible. During this surgery, the doctor uses a microscope to look at the cancerous area to make sure all the cancer cells are removed.
  • Laser surgery uses a narrow beam of light to remove cancer cells.
  • Circumcision is an operation that removes the foreskin.
  • Amputation of the penis (penectomy) is an operation that removes the penis. It is the most common and most effective treatment of cancer of the penis. In a partial penectomy, part of the penis is removed. In a total penectomy, the whole penis is removed. Lymph nodes in the groin may be taken out during surgery.

Radiation, which uses high-energy rays to attack cancer, and chemotherapy, which uses drugs to kill cancer, are other treatment options.

Reviewed by the doctors at The Cleveland Clinic Urological Institute.

Reviewed by Daniel Perlman, MD on September 24, 2007

Portions of this page © The Cleveland Clinic 2000-2005


Last Editorial Review: 12/13/2007

© 2005-2014 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
Source article on WebMD


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