Some of the following are complaints presented by patients of balanitis :
Following physical examination the following findings may be noted:
In uncomplicated cases of balanitis, laboratory studies are not always necessary but the following can be useful when appropriate :
Imaging studies that can be deployed include ultrasonography or bladder scan which will helps in detection of urinary obstruction following cases of severe balanitis. A biopsy carried out by a urologist is important in chronic cases.
In patients with balanitis but without the accompanying phimosis, the following are useful recommendations :
Patients with severe urinary obstruction as a complication of balanitis should get the following care:
It is important to note that circumcision is not a preventative treatment of balanitis in males younger than 3 years of age .
Prognosis is largely dependent on the main causes of the condition and also the presence of any predisposing risk factors . For instance, candidal balanitis often resolves rapidly with the right treatment but it is more than likely to recur in men with phimosis, poor genital hygiene and diabetes mellitus.
Balanitis as a result of contact irritants often gets resolved over a few days following removal of the provoking irritant or allergen. However, it may recur following future exposure.
There are many possible causes of this inflammation . Some of them include irritation by environmental substances, physical trauma, and infection by a wide variety of pathogens which may include bacteria, virus, fungus or sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Diabetes has also been noted as a risk factor for balanitis especially when blood sugar is not properly controlled.
Below are the proven etiologic factors of balanitis:
The organisms and viruses that have been proven to cause balanitis, including the following:
Borrelia vincentii and Borrelia burgdorferi, trichomonal species, syphilis, Gardnerella vaginalis, human papillomavirus (HPV), chlamyida species, Neisseria gonorrhea and in people with diabetes, candidal species.
In the United States, balanitis is a common condition which affects at least 3 to 11% of males . There is however, no proof of mortality associated with balanitis. Morbidity on the other hand is associated with the complications of phimosis.
The condition is seen mostly in blacks and Hispanics. There is no clear reason for this but it may be related to the different rates of circumcision.
Balanitis can be seen in males at any age but etiologies vary depending on the age of the individual .
The males most affected by balanitis are those with poor personal hygiene . Due to smegma and discharge around the glans penis, lack of aeration and irritation ensues and this leads to inflammation and edema. The main complications of balanitis include phimosis and cellulitis but these are relatively uncommon. Meatal stenosis accompanied by urinary retention is seen with balanitis in rare cases. Another rare occurrence is the buried penis syndrome as a result of balanitis.
Personal hygiene is the most important preventive measure for this condition. Also, use of all irritants must be instantly halted as soon as discomfort or irritation is noticed. Circumcision is not a guarantee for prevention but circumcision done at birth greatly reduces the chances of balanitis.
Balanitis is a condition where the head of the penis develops a sort of a wound. There are many causes of this condition but the most common causes are the use of irritating substances as well as sexually transmitted infections.
The condition can affect men of all ages but it can be easily treated with the use of special creams as long as there has not been any opportunistic complications or infections.