Can COVID shrink your penis?

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Doctors explained that coronavirus infection can cause vascular damage to the erectile tissue and said his condition is likely to be permanent.

A man claimed in a podcast that his penis shrunk 1.5 inches (3.81 centimeters) as a result of vascular damage he suffered after contracting covid.

The patient, who identified himself as a heterosexual man in his thirties, told the How To Do It sex advice podcast that after suffering severely from the disease in July last year and having to be hospitalized, he was left with an effect unexpected secondary: erectile dysfunction.

Urologists say “Covid dick” is a real phenomenon, whereby the penis can reduce in size due to damage to blood vessels.


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For example, a study of 3,400 people led by University College London found that of 200 reported long Covid symptoms, a smaller penis was one of the rarer ones. 

Calling into the podcast “How to Do It”, the man said: “I’m a heterosexual man in my 30s. In July of last year, I contracted Covid and was very sick. 

“When I got out of the hospital, I had some erectile dysfunction issues. Those gradually got better with some medical attention, but I seem to be left with a lasting problem. 

My penis has shrunk. Before I got sick, I was above average, not huge, but definitely bigger than normal. Now I’ve lost about an inch-and-a-half and become decidedly less than average. 

According to his statement, collected by an article in the British newspaper Daily Mail, the problem has had a “profound impact on my self-confidence and my abilities in bed”.

The man, who lives in the United States, explained that he is a “heterosexual in his thirties. In July of last year, he contracted Covid and was very ill. When I got out of the hospital, I had some problems with erectile dysfunction. Those gradually got better with some medical attention, but it seems I was left with a lasting problem.”

He then added: “My penis has shrunk. Before I got sick, I was above average, not huge, but definitely bigger than normal. I have now lost about an inch and a half and am decidedly below average. It appears to be due to vascular damage, and my doctors seem to think it is likely to be permanent. “

It is very important that the person consults the doctor at the first erection problems (Getty Images)It is very important that the person consults the doctor at the first erection problems

The erectile dysfunction resolved with treatment over time, but to his dismay, the victim discovered that his sexual organ had shrunk considerably, a condition doctors told him was likely permanent due to vascular damage to his erectile tissue.

Referring to the patient’s claim, Dr. Charles Welliver, urologist, and Director of Men’s Health at Albany Medical College, New York, said that the covid infection can cause erectile dysfunction and, in some cases, a shrinkage of the penis if the erectile dysfunction persists for a certain period of time.

“You can connect these dots… There are some pretty significant vascular problems that occur with men. Studies have shown that men can get priapism, the prolonged erection that is dangerous in and of itself, and men can also get erectile dysfunction from Covid, so it can go both ways,” he explained.

“When men have erectile dysfunction, they have a lack of erections for a while, and when that happens, they actually shrink a little bit,” he added.

Experts insisted that rehabilitation practices involving medication, stretching and vacuum devices can help regain lost length over time.  (Getty)Experts insisted that rehabilitation practices involving medication, stretching and vacuum devices can help regain lost length over time. (Getty)

According to the note, all this comes as a study by University College London, carried out with 3,400 people, found that a shortened penis was a rare symptom among the 200 who developed prolonged Covid.

Meanwhile, a study published in the World Journal of Men’s Health by the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine showed that widespread endothelial cell dysfunction from Covid-19 infection can contribute to significant erectile dysfunction.

On the other hand, Dr. Ashley Winter, an Oregon-based urologist, also supported the legitimacy of the claims: “It is true that having erectile dysfunction leads to shortening, the ”Covid Dick” is a real thing ”.

However, while the victim said her doctors told her her condition was likely permanent, both Welliver and Winter insisted that rehabilitation practices involving medication, stretching and vacuum devices can help regain lost length over time.

University College London conducted a study into long Covid symptoms, identifying 203 symptoms in patients from 56 countries.

Almost five percent of men suffered a “decrease in size of testicles/penis”, according to the findings which were published in the Lancet’s EClinicalMedicine.

Around 15 percent of men reported sexual dysfunction.

Is there hope?

The poor guy who wrote into the podcast was desperate for advice on his unfortunate problem.

Luckily, the experts said not all hope is lost because there are treatments for erectile dysfunction and its fallout effects.

Penis stretching using exercises or devices are commonly used as treatment for those on the smaller side – either naturally or due to disease.

An example is a vacuum pump – a tube that fits over the penis and pumps out air, causing more blood flow to the organ.

Dr. Winter said these types of therapies are given to men during their erectile dysfunction phase to prevent long-lasting damage.

Her other advice to the caller was to find a way of accepting his new penis size.

She said: “Penis length doesn’t define somebody. And the vast majority of the time dissatisfaction with penis length is really self driven and not partner driven.”

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