A-Z

Penile Cancer

Seeking help for symptoms of penile cancer

Men’s (and women’s) lives are complex, involving multiple roles and responsibilities. These responsibilities rarely disappear when a health concern arises, which means that it can often be difficult to find time to go the Doctor (GP). The NHS also offers services, such as walk-in centres, that provide medical help without the need for an appointment. Some GP surgeries now offer extended opening hours, either early in the morning, in the evening, or at weekends. Even if it is difficult finding the time, a man with penile cancer will have to see a GP before they can be referred onto a specialist.
 
The earlier a man seeks help with symptoms of penile cancer, the earlier a diagnosis can be made, which should mean that treatment can have a better outcome. While some men we spoke to told us they had acted quickly on their symptoms, others delayed seeking help. With the benefit of hindsight several men said they regretted not going to the doctor sooner.
 

John Z was passing blood in his urine but delayed reporting it until his next routine diabetic check up; he says he should have sought help sooner.

View full profile
Age at interview: 68
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 64
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Yes possibly I should have gone sooner because it was discovered on a diabetic check. Well prior to that I had the nurse said there was a spot of blood in the water but she wasn’t too concerned but within 3 or 4 weeks of that I was passing more blood and in fore... with foresight I should have gone back there and had it checked out but… being a coward [chuckles] I didn’t do that. I just let it run on to the next 6 monthly check where it was picked up and I had no options then [chuckles].

 

Mark thinks that he should have sought help a few weeks before he went to hospital; his penis...

View full profile
Age at interview: 48
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 46
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

I admitted myself to the local hospital on the 8th of October 2009, and… I’d considered that I’d been ill for… way before maybe 5 months before that. It manifested its way, it was strange really in as much that… it looked like, that I had a permanent semi-erection … the penis wasn’t soft. It was… it was hard to the touch. The skin... was... sort of adhering itself to something that was underneath it. It was the strangest thing. And indescribable pain, the pain got worse on the approach to the 8th of October. It was manageable... 3 or 4 weeks before but got progressively worse. I was... finding it difficult to urinate, I was urinating... blood... and copious amounts of blood as well... and a white fluid, I don’t know what the white fluid was. And... I should have gone... three or four weeks prior.

It can be difficult to decide whether a symptom will go away of its own accord and if it requires professional help. A number of the men we spoke to initially thought their symptoms were harmless and weren't affecting their daily life, and so they delayed any action. One man assumed that the lump that had emerged on the side of his penis was a benign or ‘harmless’ cyst, whilst another thought the lump was a wart.
 

Tom didn’t consider that he had a ‘condition’. For a time he did nothing, and even after getting...

View full profile
Age at interview: 71
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 69
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Yes, because I didn’t really consider it to be a ‘condition’ if you like, in inverted commas. Just as one naturally, you know, you get an ache in your back you don’t go to the doctor on Day One, you see how it progresses and this was very, infinitely small progress and you know it’s not something that you’re sort of examining on a daily basis and you’re seeing it. It’s not like a cut on your thumb that’s catching everything that you touch and therefore [coughs] there was quite a period of time that I did absolutely nothing and when, even when I went and got the medication to put on it ah, I was fairly fastidious in using it ah, and as I say there did seem to be some improvements but ah, there was probably eighteen months at least to possibly two years before the final diagnosis, so yes there I mean there was obviously delay on my part in not going back immediately I’d finished the sessions of treatment of seeing how it went because it was not in my mind that it was anything particularly more than a nuisance, and obviously in my own GP’s mind as well, he wasn’t too concerned.

 

As Tim was having problems going to the toilet, he asked his GP to check for prostate cancer....

View full profile
Age at interview: 54
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 53
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

It was just over a year ago, about a year and a half ago, and I’d slowly been having problems going to the toilet, weeing usually. Usually, it was after I’d been to the toilet, there was dribbles coming out. I had to go out to go straight back again. And I did a little bit of reading around and it fitted the symptoms of prostate cancer. I wasn’t too worried at that stage but I thought I’d mention it to the doctors. I was seeing the doctor anyway for blood pressure, so I just mentioned it while I was there. He then sent me off to have blood tests and investigate that. Those all came back negative when I went to see him again. He, but in the meantime, problems slowly got worse, and it got to the stage where when I was standing to, standing up to wee, it was just taking ages and ages to pass water and I was thinking, ‘the next time I come I’m going to bring a book here to [laugh] it’s not going to come out again at all next, one day. So I went back to the doctor and then, well about that sort of time, I started to notice a growth right from the end of my penis. It looked like a sort of tiny wart. So when I went back to see the doctor, talking about the prostate cancer, but those tests had come back negative, but he wanted to do a, an inspection finger up your bum inspection, so I had to do that. And I must admit that was the, that was the start of the sort of nervousness if you like, the first time you have to [hesitation] drop your trousers to the doctor that’s [laughs]. You’re quite, quite embarrassed and you don’t really want to talk about it. And I think perhaps if I hadn’t been going to see him about the blood pressure, I probably would have waited a bit longer before I plucked up the courage. So while he was doing the, the checking the prostate, I just said to him, ‘Look, can I think I’ve got another problem, you know on my penis. Can you have a look at that while I’ve, while I’ve got my trousers down?’ So that was, yeah ok, that was another embarrassing moment. I’d got, I’d coped with the finger in the bum, but looking at your penis, I don’t think any man had really seen it [chuckles] ever. So he looked at that and he obviously asked a lot of questions, you know, ‘Do you think it’s sexually transmitted? Have you been playing away or anything? Well, I knew I hadn’t so that was fine enough, but. So his reaction then was, ‘Ok this could be something, something nasty.’ He said. He gave me some ointment to put on it, and said, ‘If it doesn’t go away, come back, come back within, come back in ten days. Whatever happens let me know. So I think he obviously at that point realised it could be something nasty. And I think I’m quite grateful to him for actually sort of taking it so seriously at that point. So yes, I took the ointment and it eased, there was a slight pain on this growth, and the ointment actually eased the pain, which was quite interesting. So I thought it was doing something. But obviously it wasn’t reducing in size at all. So I went back to see him after, I think it was in two weeks. But I tell you that’s close enough to ten days for a man to go to the doctor isn’t it. And from that point he said, ‘Right, I’m going to refer you to a consultant.’ He says, ‘I think it does need to be checked out.’

 

Colin did have a bit of soreness but he just passed it off as a general body function.

View full profile
Age at interview: 62
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 62
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

It weren’t really a concern as such. It was there and it didn’t really, it seemed to progress more when I’d had it messed with than it did while I’d got it. Yes I did you know I did have a little bit of a soreness occasionally there which I just passed off as general body functions or things like that. It wasn’t a concern to be untoward, which obviously I never thought it would have been cancer. You know I just thought it might be some kind of wart or something, you know, but that... And that was it. So… it wasn’t a concern. It wasn’t… I didn’t even take no notice of it.

One man had a patch of discolouration on the head of his penis for many years, and had previously sought help from his GP who assured him it was nothing to worry about. When a lump emerged on his penis, he returned to his GP.
 
Text only
Read below

After checking it with his GP, Jordan lived with a patch on his penis for almost 30 years: when a lump started to grow on the patch, Jordan went back to his GP.

View full profile
Age at interview: 58
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 57
HIDE TEXT
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Well the patch on the penis had been there, I’d say, [phew sound] 28 years, but it had never changed at all, so I didn’t bother about. I didn’t think anything of it. I did having said that, I did see the doctor because my wife said until I got it looked at, as she was carrying my daughter, before she was born. She said, ‘Get it looked at, otherwise I don’t want to make love. So [laugh] obviously that got me round to the doctor’s. The doctor looked at me and he said he didn’t see any problem with it. It was just a bit of discolouration and… it never went any further. And obviously for the, the last 27 years it’s not gone any further. So, it was when the lump started to grow, and... the bleeding and that sort of thing, that I actually... made the decision to do something about it.

Even if a man has a concern about a symptom, it may not be easy to seek help. Men may put things off, hoping that the symptoms will go away. Others may worry that an examination by a doctor may reveal that they have something serious and so they may hope that their body will fight it off before they have to take action. Many said they only sought help after their symptoms worsened.
 

Paul couldn’t bring himself to seek help; he just kept putting it off, using topical creams and...

View full profile
Age at interview: 61
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 59
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Well as I say, I’m a very private person and I’ve had other illnesses, serious ones, in my lifetime and I kind of tended to... I just couldn’t bring myself to tell anyone, or to go and seek help, you know, I know I should have done, especially in the early stages because I obviously wouldn’t have had to have such drastic surgery but, that’s like on reflection you know you um, that’s looking at it in hindsight isn’t it so...

I just kept putting it off and I was using all these different creams just in the hope that it would go away but obviously it didn’t.
 

 

Mark doesn’t get frightened easily but this scared him. It got bad very quickly. He was in a...

View full profile
Age at interview: 48
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 46
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

I think I was frightened. I think I was. And I’m not anybody who’s frightened of situations. People don’t frighten me. But I was, it got very bad, when I say to people, it got very bad, very quickly. And I said that to my surgeon. It was manageable. And I’m talking now, let’s say 4, 5 weeks before I went in, it was just a slight, it was just a slight lump, a very slight lump. It wasn’t painful. It was one of those things where I think we’ve all... ‘oh it’ll go’. So I adopt that attitude. But it, it didn’t go and it, and it started to grow very quickly. And like I said it was, it was, it was, described as a squamous cell carcinoma. What that is I don’t know, but it grew very quickly. Under the skin, it was rock hard, it was as hard as, hard as iron, it was solid. And like I said it was… it got very bad very quickly. And it got to a point, it sort of runs over you and all of a sudden you’re in a point where you know 2 weeks prior to going you’re in a terrible state, you are in a terrible state and you can’t bring yourself, be man enough about it, to bring yourself to go and deal with it.

 

Jordan delayed seeking help because he was worried about what was going to happen.

View full profile
Age at interview: 58
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 57
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

You talked about delaying seeking help, what do you think were the main reasons why you delayed?

Well the worry of what I … how it would end up. The usual sort of thing, you bury your head in the sand and hope it goes away and… I suppose because I’ve already had such good health over the years, and I’ve got over, you know…, some pretty difficult times health-wise, and I’ve always fought them off, and I thought, ‘Well, am I going to do it with this?’ but as time went on, I realised it was not going to happen. So the decision was virtually made for me.
 

When experiencing symptoms, men may feel emotions including fear, anxiety or a sense of embarrassment. For many men, their penis is the most private part of their body. Some men may feel anxious or embarrassed about showing their penis to a doctor. These emotions can often stop people from seeking help.
 

Les says he was embarrassed about showing a lump on his penis to others, but the biggest delay...

View full profile
Age at interview: 55
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 41
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Oh, well, I suppose in a way really it was a matter of with me being embarrassed about showing it and things like that, but I just basically went to the GP and the big delay was the fact that the they thought it was a wart and there was a year passed then before I actually went back again and had the surgeon who said it was cancer. Which I suppose could have been quite vital but luckily I got away with it [laughs].

 

Michael had never been to the doctors for a urological problem before; he delayed seeking help...

View full profile
Age at interview: 79
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 77
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Why do you think you did delay?

I don’t, embarrassment, I’ve never been to a doctor’s for that sort of thing before and it was going to be embarrassing I thought. It wasn’t but I thought at the time it would have been embarrassing. The doctor was - my own GP was very good, very caring and he did everything he could and I was quite satisfied with what he did.

Did you have any fears?

Not any fears but once they told me it was cancer I was more embarrassed than fear I think that wear off quite quickly the fears all the embarrassment wear off.
 

The first steps to seeking help can be difficult. If a man has regular contact with a health professional for pre-existing health problems, these appointments can provide a prime opportunity for discussing new symptoms. A number of the men we spoke to raised concerns about their symptoms at check-ups for other health conditions. David told us that his irregular heart beat (called atrial fibrillation) required him to have regular check-ups. At one of these appointments he mentioned that he was experiencing pain under his foreskin. Even if the nurse or doctor is too busy to take more time within a routine check-up, they can arrange for a follow-up appointment or recommend another service that may be better suited to checking a particular symptom.
 

While having some skin tags examined, Colin showed his GP a pimple on his penis and asked for...

View full profile
Age at interview: 62
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 62
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Well what I actually did, I went to the doctors for a couple of skin tags in, from the inside of my leg, or the inside of my thighs I should say. And … and while I was there I asked him just to check, he checked me for prostate for testical cancer. And just a general medical check-up as well. And I did explain to him that I’d got a small growth or pimple on the side of my the gland on my penis. And which he actually examined. And he said, ‘Does it does it bleed?’ and I said, ‘well it has on occasion’. And he asked me how long that I’d had it. It must have been couple of years. Which up until then it never ever given me any problems, no problems at all. And to which he went onto the... computer and typed a letter out for me to go up and see the urologist and the local hospital. At which…I think it was a week or maybe 10 days later I went up and seen him. And he said that it was penile cancer. Which obviously I’d never heard of penile cancer but he did explain to me after that it was cancer of the penis basically. But they couldn’t really give me... confirm that due to a biopsy being taken. Of which approximately a couple of weeks after I went back in, they give me a biopsy, took a biopsy off it. And it was confirmed that I’d got penile cancer.

 

Rodger went to see his GP for something unrelated. Whilst he was being examined, the GP noticed...

View full profile
Age at interview: 65
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 63
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Basically I went to the doctor’s... for something completely different… and as I was being examined the doctor noticed [hesitation] what looked like a wart so he said, ‘I think we ought to have a second opinion on this’ and arranged for me to go to the local hospital. I went, and I was examined and at that stage he didn’t seem to think it was anything untoward. I then, probably a month later it seemed to get worse, so I went back to the doctors and he said, ‘Yes, I think we ought to have you back in again.’ This time they said they’d do a biopsy on a day ward.

 

At a routine appointment for his irregular heartbeat, David mentioned that a lump under his...

View full profile
Age at interview: 70
Sex: Male
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Yes I was first aware of a sore, some kind of lump, which was just on the under underside of my foreskin. And it was probably it would be some months I think I was aware of this, it becoming more sore and tighter. And so I saw my GP who it interestingly it had been a GP who had who specialised in heart conditions. Which be a fairly big practice and I’d been seeing him for atrial fibrillation which is variable pulse rate. And he’d been diagnosing me to that, for that, looking at that and had actually directed me towards a specialist at in [Name of place] for that condition. Saved me actually a lot of time rather than going through the conventional referral to a general heart specialist. So that was particularly good by him and then I also mentioned that I’d got I was I was sort of, you know, suffering this soreness and he had a look at it. And so he sent me to a referral to a consultant who I saw very quickly at the local hospital, local general hospital. And he did a biopsy probably within a month, less than a month I should say, of the GP first saying that there was some concern.

Life events or past experiences can have a powerful impact on our ability or willingness to seek help. Some of the men we interviewed had previous experience of cancer within their family; in some cases this affected their help seeking decisions. Some said they had sought help specifically because they had a history of cancer in the family. Others report that this was a deterrent to acting on their symptoms. John had suffered two bereavements in his immediate family as a result of cancer. He didn’t want his friends and family to suffer in the way that he had. Consequently, he found himself trusting to chance that it wouldn’t happen in his case.
 
Text only
Read below

John didn't delay help seeking because of fear; instead he didn't want his friends to have to go...

View full profile
Age at interview: 75
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 74
HIDE TEXT
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

I didn’t want my friends to have to... go through the kind of thing that I’d gone under with my wife and my son. I wanted to put it off. There was a little bit of me sort of all the time thinking ‘well it won’t happen, it won’t happen’. It was as simple as that, I, you know. And that’s why peop.. my friends have said and my son and daughter and that ‘that’s crazy John’. But it wasn’t. To me it made... at the time it made sense, you know. Now I share it all with… everything with them. You know and... the little things and the big things. Because there’s no little things. And also, if there’s anything I go to the doctor. I mean this is the first time but it’s happened but I went to the doctor. You know whereas I hadn’t really visited my own doctor apart from regular checks because I have I have blood pressure tablets which have gone on and I’ve got to see him. Apart from that I’ve not really… consulted with my doctor since this all started. So that’s the answer there. And it’s a very important one. You know…it wasn’t it wasn’t a case of... it wasn’t fear. It wasn’t fear. It was it was … disclosure to others and the effect it would have on others, you know.

Partners, family and friends can be instrumental in encouraging men to take the first step to receiving help with a health concern (see also ‘The support of others’). For instance, Big D told us that his partner strongly encouraged him to seek help.
 

Big D’s partner encouraged him to seek help. He said he probably would have sought help...

View full profile
Age at interview: 61
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 60
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

So what encouraged you to seek help?

My partner basically. Just in case anything was more sinister than we thought. She bullied me a little bit into it. But when you think about it you can see the reasons behind it. But at that stage I wasn’t thinking about it.


Do you think you would have gone to see someone else for help if it wasn’t for your partner?


It depends how long. It would probably have been a lot longer than it was. If the lump was still there and I was still worried about it then eventually I probably would have done, yes. But it might have been six months down the line, or further.
 

While considering seeking help for their initial concerns about their penis, there will inevitably be other things going on in the man’s life. Some of the events may be so powerful that they make any concerns about penile cancer seem irrelevant. Jim had recently lost his son and was so devastated by his bereavement that he was not particularly concerned about the symptoms he was experiencing.
 

Jim had noticed a pimple on his penis in June 2009. He had just lost his son and was so...

View full profile
Age at interview: 60
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 58
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Back in June 2009 I noticed a pimple on the head of my penis. This was the first time I’d ever seen it and it came immediately after the death of my son. And I didn’t really think any more about it because I was in... so devastated at the time. However the pimple carried on being there, didn’t go away. And a few months later, I think November, it actually had got bigger by then and it actually burst open. Wasn’t that terribly concerned but... and left it until January of 2010. At the beginning of January I thought I’d better go to the hospital and have it checked.

Once they had sought help from a professional, many men had to consult their Doctor (GP) two or three times before being referred to an appropriate specialist. This is because the signs and symptoms (see ‘Signs & symptoms of penile cancer’) of penile cancer are similar to those for other conditions. Consequently, the Doctor (GP) may think the symptoms the man presents are something that isn’t very serious or can be dealt with without the need or a specialist. Several of the men that we spoke to had a delay to their diagnosis of penile cancer because they were initially misdiagnosed by their GP or another health professional (see also ‘Diagnosis and tests for penile cancer ’). Some GPs initially suspected a prostate problem and tested for that; others dismissed the symptoms at first. Les was initially told that the lump on his penis was a genital wart. Not only was he treated for this condition but his wife was also tested. It was approximately a year before the lump was removed with surgery. Steve was told that he had herpes for several months before being diagnosed with Lichen Sclerosus, a skin condition in the foreskin. Several men were treated by their GP for thrush but for many the cream made their penis sore. Because he was having problems passing urine, James paid to see a private consultant who performed a circumcision. This revealed a sore patch which was misdiagnosed and mistreated for many months before an appropriate referral was made.
 

After noticing a lump on his penis, Les went to his GP who told him it was a genital wart....

View full profile
Age at interview: 55
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 41
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Right, well it’s about fourteen years ago, something like 1996, 1997. I noticed a lump on my penis, and I’d had it for a while, and it just became very, very itchy and sore. and I went to my GP and basically he just said it’s a genital wart so he sent me to the... it’s just known as the VD Clinic and I went there and when they examined me I went with my wife and they said because it’s a genital wart she was tested and swabbed as well which raised a few concerns at the time as to who’d been doing what with who and where and when at the time. But, there was no great issues because our marriage, well we’d been married twenty years plus then and we certainly knew each other really well then and we’re still happily married now but I’m sure something like that posed with someone in a relationship that was a bit shaky it could, I’m certain it would upset it in some way. And it was a concern at the time but then they just basically started treating this thing as a wart. I was going there for something like six or eight weeks. Each week they go and spray it with this nitrogen spray designed to freeze the wart off err and it just made it sore, really, really sore. And in the end they just said, ‘Oh, it will drop off in time, just leave it, it’ll be ok, there’s nothing to worry about.’ And it was a year late, a good, it was a good year later it and was still there this thing and it basically started getting a little bit bigger and it was getting sore. And I went back to the same clinic and told them basically, ‘You said that this would fall away with no problem.’ And from then I was referred to a surgeon and he just basically said to me he’d lop it off, [nods head] which they did.

 

A GP treated the sore on Steve’s penis as herpes. When this didn’t work he was referred to a sex...

View full profile
Age at interview: 71
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 65
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

I found a sore on the penis….thought it would just clear up, just thought I’d…working with stone I just thought It’d be an abrasion or some sort of thing and left it for several months, then when it didn’t clear up I went to the GP. He immediately, without examining me, decided it was herpes, which wasn’t received very well but …..was sent home with a flea in my ear basically and went back 3, 4 months after to see another GP because it still hadn’t cleared up, who then decided to treat me for herpes. Then decided it wasn’t after 3 weeks after that he decided it wasn’t herpes and then sent me to the sex clinic in [Hospital] and….. the doctor there turned round and said that it was a Lichen Sclerosus. And they tried to treat it for several months. In failing to make any progress he then sent me to the skin clinic…which I was attended for about 18 months before I met the top man who decided that it was he wasn’t happy with it. And he had a biopsy done on it and it turned out to be cancer. The story started form 19... sorry 2002. By the time they’d decided it was cancer it was 2005. So it’s a long period of time and... the treatment from then on I was delighted with.

 

Mick visited his GP who told him that it was thrush. Treatment for this only made his symptoms...

View full profile
Age at interview: 69
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 67
SHOW TEXT VERSION
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

Well I went to the toilet and I found out I had this rash on my down below and I thought well there’s something wrong here. So I went to see my GP. And he tell me it was thrush. He were treating me for it and that. And it just wouldn’t go away. I went back to him again, he give me some more ointment and that. In the time that my surgery where I was, it changed. So I had to go and the GP who I had, he retired. So I saw, I had this other GP. She was giving me the same. It was a different doctor altogether. And it was going worse instead of getting better so I went for a second opinion. And this other GP he had a look at it and he sent me straight to the hospital.

 
Text only
Read below

After a circumcision, James noticed a sore patch; this was treated with creams for a long time,...

View full profile
Age at interview: 67
Sex: Male
Age at diagnosis: 66
HIDE TEXT
PRINT TRANSCRIPT

I first suspected something was wrong after the circumcising of the thing when I went back for the post-operative test, which the doctor noticed there’s something there when he was examining me. From there he sent me to a friend who was a consultant, another doctor who saw me and interviewed me and prescribed some steroid creams probably to ease it or kill off, a little bit sorer on the end. I carried on using the creams but they made me more sore. So I probably stopped using the cream and actually got it changed by the doctor after I saw him again, because I went on like a monthly basis to be examined and assessed. And this went on for probably… 12 months, something like that, putting this cream. But it didn’t seem to do any good, it didn’t go any worse but didn’t get any better. This little sore patch continued to be there. And after a while, after going so many times I actually missed an appointment at the hospital and they tended to… their standard policy if you missed an appointment you didn’t get another. So I carried on at home using the creams and it still… it still was getting sore. And then I stopped using them for a while and it would mend up a little bit. But the consultant I’d originally seen had had said that if I didn’t use the creams it would turn cancerous. And eventually I went to see my own doctor because I’d run out of cream to get hold of some more. And he prescribed the same cream as the consultant’s guy which I carried on using for probably another 12 months off and on. Because I stopped using it from a week or two because it got too sore and then I’d start using it again because in the back of my mind I’d been told it could be cancerous. And it sort of went on... on and off and on and off like that for another 12 months. And eventually I got a… waterworks infection. So I rang up the doctors and I couldn’t get in to see my doctor but I saw the nurse practitioner who prescribed some antibiotics. Which were… worked wonderfully. They saw the waterworks infection off, but within a fortnight it was back. Then I rang the doctors again and I still couldn’t see the, my doctor but I got a locum who was a young Indian doctor, who was quite switched on and on-the-ball. And he examined me and gave me a larger dose of the antibiotics to clear up the waterworks infection and also I mentioned the soreness and these little mark on the end. He examined me and gave me a note to attend the [Hospital], as an outpatient. And this I did and eventually I… well they took a biopsy which turned out to be cancerous.

Once men had obtained the correct diagnosis, most of the men we spoke to were extremely happy with the service they received from health professionals (see ‘Professional support’).

Last reviewed July 2017.
Last updated January 2015.
 
donate
Previous Page
Next Page