A buried or hidden penis is a condition where an otherwise normal penis becomes hidden behind the skin or fat. In some men, the condition is visible at birth. In other cases, it develops later in life, potentially due to illness and lifestyle factors.
Which treatment is most suitable depends on the causes of the condition. In many cases, surgery is the best course of action.
This article will guide you through what you need to know about buried penis and what treatment options you have.
What is a Buried Penis?
A buried penis is a medical condition that can affect men of all ages. When you suffer from this condition, your penis is hidden under layers of fat or skin from the abdomen, the thighs, or the pubic area, making it appear smaller or completely invisible.
The condition is also known as hidden penis, retracted penis, or inverted penis. It differs from micropenis, where the penis is shorter than 3.67 inches when stretched. A buried penis usually has an average size, but it is hidden under layers of the surrounding skin or fat.
What Causes a Buried Penis?
It is possible to be born with the condition. If it develops later in life, doctors consider it to be “acquired.” Most acquired buried penises develop as a consequence of another medical condition.
Acquired or not, the condition can have a severe impact on men’s physical and psychological health as well as their quality of life.
Common causes of a buried penis include:
- Obesity that leads to excessive fat tissue
- Weak penile ligaments
Do you believe you suffer from buried penis? Read on to learn about different causes and possible treatments available.
Any condition that causes inflammation of the genital skin may also lead to a buried penis. For example, the skin condition lichen sclerosis may chronically inflame the head of the penis.
As a response, the head – also known as the glans – may move under the surrounding skin of the penis. If the inflammation is not treated and becomes a long-term problem, it can cause a buried penis.
2. Obesity and Excessive Fat Tissue
Obesity and morbid obesity have become the most common causes of a buried penis in adult men. Many with obesity have excess fat tissue in the area between their abdomen and their penis. This is known as the suprapubic fat pad.
If the fat pad envelops the shaft of the penis, it can make it look shorter than it actually is, leading to low self-esteem and other mental health problems.
It is not uncommon for a buried penis to develop following an injury and infection.
Circumcision can injure the penis, both if too much or too little foreskin is removed. A so-called radical circumcision, where too much foreskin is taken away during the procedure may cause the penis to be pushed upward and become trapped.
On the other hand, if medical practitioners remove too little foreskin, the penis could retract into the remaining skin. Any medical procedure carries a risk of infection, which can further contribute to a hidden penis.
Other injuries to the penis can develop as the result of substandard penis enlargement procedures. Like all elective procedures, penis enlargement needs to be researched and should only be done by a qualified and experienced doctor.
Complications of injections or surgical procedures may cause a build-up of scar tissue around the penis or cause it to retract. As a result, the visible part of your penis becomes shorter.
4. Swelling and Lymphedema
Lymphedema is a health condition that can cause fluid build-up in different body parts. If this build-up is located in the scrotum, it can cause swelling and eventually bury the penis under the swollen tissue.
5. Weak Penile Ligaments
In some cases, a buried penis develops because of congenital reasons and is apparent at birth. Weak penile ligaments caused by a condition called dysgenic dartos can be responsible for that.
When the skin of the penis is not fully attached to the ligaments that would normally support it, the penis may slide into the scrotum. A hidden penis is the result.
Complications from Buried Penis
Complications arising from a buried penis include mental and physical health concerns. Many people with a buried penis experience low self-esteem and struggle to build interpersonal relationships.
Physical complications can vary from erectile dysfunction, which is also linked to mental health problems, to an increased risk of penile cancer.
Inflammation can be both a cause for and a complication of a buried penis if it becomes chronic. People with the condition are prone to develop comorbidities like inflammation of the glans and the foreskin.
For some patients, a hidden penis leads to difficulties with their urinary tract. Urine leakage and difficulty urinating are common, and sufferers may also experience infections or a weak urine stream.
Treating a Buried Penis
Treating a buried penis starts by identifying the underlying causes.
If a patient developed the condition due to being overweight or obese, changes in diet and lifestyle may improve the condition. For some children born with a congenital buried penis, the condition resolves as they grow.
However, most cases require surgery. When it comes to penile surgery to treat a buried penis, the options once again depend on the causes of the condition.
If it was caused by obesity, many patients benefit from surgery combined with a weight loss program. During the surgery, your doctor removes fat and abdominal skin to expose the buried penis.
Surgery can also correct scarring caused by previous injuries and illnesses. Moreover, surgeons can repair damaged skin, including skin grafts.
If weak penile ligaments don’t resolve themselves, surgical treatments can help manipulate those ligaments.
In addition, you may consider enhancing the size of your penis during the procedure with an aesthetic penile implant. A peer-reviewed academic study found that the Penuma aesthetic penile implant can help extend a hidden penis and treat the condition.
Whatever option you choose, it’s important to understand that whilst correcting the size and appearance of your penis matters, protecting your sexual health by treating inflammation and infections matters more.
Choosing an experienced and qualified surgeon will help you get the treatment you need, improving your overall health and well-being.