Q. I have reddish discoloration on my penis. Is this due to frequent rubbing with undergarments?

Answered by
Dr. Dhepe Snehal Laul
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on Dec 12, 2020

Hello doctor,

I have a strange red discoloration on the glans of my penis (on the top). At first, I thought maybe it was from rubbing inside the briefs, but it has been there for several months and has become bigger, and it also tends to get dry. A rug burn is the best thing I can say to describe it. I have been with one partner for 10 years. I am pretty fit with no medical conditions.



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Do you have burning on urination, increased frequency of urination, or irritation? Will you do excess scratching and rubbing of the lesion? Will you do rough handling? Do you have any contact with irritant or chemical contact? Have you used lubricants and harsh soap? Do you have latex allergies? Is there any history of atopy or allergies? Do you have uncontrolled sugar levels or diabetes? Is there a history of fungal infection or swelling or inflammation of the glans penis in the past? Do you have balanitis?

Attach the picture of the lesion for confirmation of diagnosis and treatment plan.

Thank you doctor,

The answer to all of the above queries are no. I do occasionally get a rash on my arms when I use certain lotions. So I just avoid that by not using those brands.



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Use Miconazole gel (Micogel) at night for 15 days, Fucidin cream at noon for seven days, Moisturex soft cream at daytime for 15 days.

Please avoid scratching or rubbing lesions as it may cause secondary bacterial infection. It is balanitis (inflammatory red lesion) of the penis. Hygiene plays a very important role. Maintain proper genital hygiene. Use a mild cleanser like Episoft cleanser or no soap cleanser to wash genitals daily.

Avoid harsh or scented soap. Wear loose, thin, comfortable cotton inner. Please avoid the use of coconut oil as a lubricant on the genitals as it causes dryness.

Do you have a family history of psoriasis? Do you have atopy or eczema?

Thank you doctor,

Are these over the counter gels and creams, or do I need a prescription? I have never had psoriasis, but I do believe my younger brother has it. I do not have atopy or eczema.



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You can get it OTC also. Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory disease that presents with a scaly plaque with redness. In 25 percent of cases, it is itchy. If localized, then topical treatment is sufficient to take care of it. There is no cure but it can be well controlled.

Topical moisturizers and steroids are helpful in localized psoriasis. Sometimes spreading infection (fungal infection) can occur. The differential is nummular eczema. Psoriasis is a T-cell mediated inflammatory disease in which there is increased skin proliferation that forms a new skin every four days.

Avoid stress and trauma or injury to the skin. Do not scratch lesions. Use good moisturizers and keep skin hydrated. Pain killers can exacerbate psoriasis lesions. There is also one more concept like penile psoriasis. Is there skin shedding, scales, or silvery-white scales on an erythematous base?

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